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Wednesday morning snapshot

A snapshot of the early morning's equity news and key market movements.

Last night in the US: The Dow Jones closed down 27 points at 16,179, the NASDAQ finished down five points at 4287 and the S&P 500 ended the day down two points at 1845.

This morning in London: The FTSE 100 is currently down 16 points at 6813.

FX and commodities: GBP/USD is down 14 pips at $1.6667, EUR/USD is down nine pips at $1.3736 and USD/JPY is up 11 pips at ¥102.34. Brent crude is up nine cents at $109.51 and gold is trading at $1341, up $1.50.

Stocks: ITV has seen core profits jump by 21% and is looking to pay out a special dividend of £161 million to shareholders. There’s good news for AstraZeneca, as the US Food and Drug Administration regulatory body has approved its Myalept drug. Although Weir Group has posted a 5% drop in profits for 2013, it has seen signs of optimism for the year ahead, and as such the shares have shown a mild improvement in early trading. Petrofac has reported a 3% increase of $650 million in profits for 2013, which is better than markets had expected.  

The day ahead: This morning we will hear from Monetary Policy Committee member Dr Ben Broadbent, speaking ahead of the release of second-estimate quarterly GDP figures. This afternoon, commodity markets will also be poised to assess the latest US home sales and crude inventories.

All figures correct at 8.15am. All times London time.

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