Thursday morning snapshot

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

Last night in the US: The Dow Jones closed flat at 16,222, the NASDAQ finished down 25 points at 4307 and the S&P 500 ended the day down 11 points at 1860.

This morning in London: The FTSE 100 is currently down 31 points at 6542.

FX and commodities: GBP/USD is up 17 pips at $1.6551, EUR/USD is up 16 pips at $1.3832 and USD/JPY is up two pips at ¥102.41. Brent crude is up nine cents at $105.91 and gold is trading at $1331, down $1.5.

Stocks: British retailer Next has met its annual profit targets with an 11.8% year-on-year increase. Lloyds has continued its asset-stripping as it aims to sell off £280 million of real-estate loan portfolios. Mulberry’s chief executive officer Bruno Guillon has announced he will be stepping down; this follows a profit warning issued by the fashion house only two months ago. Also in the fashion retail sector, Ted Baker has seen its profits jump by 35% for the year 2013.

The day ahead: Today sees the start of the latest EU economic summit. The afternoon will see the release of US unemployment claims, existing home sales and the results from the latest bank stress tests in the US.

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

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