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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 20 points at 16,511, the NASDAQ finished up 35 points at 4125 and the S&P 500 ended the day up seven points at 1885.

This morning in London: The FTSE 100 is currently up two points at 6846.

FX and commodities: GBP/USD is down seven pips at $1.6806, EUR/USD is down 13 pips at $1.3695 and USD/JPY is down six pips at ¥101.45. Brent crude is up 13 cents at $109.48 and gold  is trading at $1290, down $2.25.

Stocks: Vodafone has painted a disappointing picture for 2015 as it expects profits to fall, however 2014 should meet expectations. Three years of declining profits (even if it is less than expected) have done little to cheer M&S shareholders, as the ‘jam tomorrow’ story keeps being repeated. Once again problems with the US appeals courts look to be keeping open the possibility of further claims against BP for the 2010 Gulf of Mexico disaster. The London Stock Exchange is in discussions to acquire asset management group Russell Investments. RSA insurance has agreed to sell off its Canadian brokerage business for £275 million.

The day ahead: The morning session will be dominated by UK inflation figures expected to edge a fraction higher, while the afternoon sees both Federal Open Market Committee members Charles Plosser and William Dudley speaking at different events. Following on from yesterday’s comments from Bank of England governor Mark Carney, it is the turn of the deputy governor Charles Bean to talk at an event at the London School of Economics.

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

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