1. Gold At Five Month Highs On Fed Uncertainty
Gold prices edged higher on Wednesday morning to settle to a more than five-month peak as a softer dollar supported the noble metal. Investors will be looking for cues on the rate hike trajectory of the Federal Reserve at the conclusion of its meeting scheduled today at 19:00 GMT. Spot gold (XAUUSD) 0.05 percent higher at $1,250.25 per ounce, as of 8:00 GMT, after hitting its highest since July 11 at $1,251.06 earlier in the session.*
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2. Oil Prices Rebound
Oil prices rebounded on Wednesday after a prolonged decline during the past three sessions on oversupply concerns and a slowing global economy keeping markets under pressure though sentiment may be shifting as falling equity markets seemed to stabilize. West Texas Intermediate futures (USOIL) climbed 13 cents cents, or 0.3 percent, to $46.74 per barrel by 8:00 GMT, after plunging 7.3 percent yesterday. Global benchmark Brent crude futures (CL_BRENT) rose 0.64 percent, or 59 cents, at $56.59 per barrel. It should be noted that Brent dropped 5.6 percent on Tuesday, at one point hitting a 14-month low.**
3. Debenhams Chairman Says Mike Ashley Is Free To Make Takeover Bid
Debenhams’ chairman Sir Ian Cheshire has issued Mike Ashley with an ultimatum to make an official offer to take over the business or stay out of the retail company’s affairs. Ashley, who already owns a 29.7 per cent stake in Debenhams through Sports Direct slammed the struggling department store last week for rejecting his offer of £40 million interest-free loan in order to save it from collapsing, in exchange for more shares in the company. Ashley’s offer sparked a bitter dispute between himself and Debenhams board. DEB shares plunged on Tuesday, as the news of the dispute broke out, tumbling to all-time lows. DEB shares opened 5% lower this morning at £4.346 as of 8:15 GMT, a far cry away from their £119.700 all-time highs in 2012.***
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*Source: Forbes, Dec 19, 2018, 6:25 AM GMT
**Source: Reuters, Dec 19, 2018, 4:16 AM GMT
***Source: Retailgazette, Dec 19, 2018, 3:03 AM ET