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Tuesday morning snapshot

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

Last night in the US: The Dow Jones closed up 134 points at 16,457, the NASDAQ finished up 43 points at 4198 and the S&P 500 ended the day up 14 points at 1872.

This morning in London: The FTSE 100 is currently up 32 points at 6630.

FX and commodities: GBP/USD is down two pips at $1.6663, EUR/USD is up four pips at $1.3774 and USD/JPY is up three pips at ¥103.24. Brent crude is down 25 cents at $107.45 and gold is trading at $1283, down $1.25.

Stocks: The UK spending watchdog has decided that the government did sell off part of its holding in Royal Mail too cheaply. British support services company Babcock has added the London Fire Brigade to its portfolio of clients. Scottish firm Weir Group has launched an audacious bid to acquire Finnish company Metso for $8.5 billion. ICAP has seen lower trading volumes for both February and March as global markets have wobbled.

The day ahead: Today will see the manufacturing purchasing managers index figures for Spain, Italy, the EU and the UK. EU unemployment figures will be released before 10am today. In the afternoon we will see US equivalent manufacturing figures along with construction spending and economic optimism.

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

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