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Kroger's Ocado deal; Walmart earnings; Italian jitters

1. Kroger bets on automation: Kroger has agreed an exclusive deal with UK online supermarket to use ...

Posted: May 17, 2018 12:44 PM
Updated: May 17, 2018 12:44 PM

1. Kroger bets on automation: Kroger has agreed an exclusive deal with UK online supermarket to use its automated warehouse technology in the United States.

Kroger will also take a stake of 5% in Ocado with an investment worth about -183 million ($247 million) as part of the deal.

Ocado said it considered Kroger the best positioned supermarket to succeed in the US online grocery market.

The British company has struck similar deals with supermarket chains in France, Canada and Sweden in recent months. Shares in Ocado shot up 44% in London after the announcement, to a new record high.

2. Retail earnings: Walmart, the world's biggest retailer, will publish first quarter results before the opening bell.

Walmart's stock is down 13% so far this year, hurt by concerns about its online sales growth. Analysts are watching the company's online performance to understand whether and how it can compete with Amazon.

Walmart's $16 billion deal to buy Indian online retailer Flipkart also got an icy response from investors.

Nordstrom will report earnings after the closing bell. The company just opened its first standalone men's location, a gadget-heavy store in New York that's designed to lure shoppers with a unique experience. Investors will want to know how customers are responding.

3. Italian jitters: Italian stocks and government bonds dropped on Wednesday, after reports of a leaked draft coalition program between two populist parties spooked investors. The main market in Milan recovered slightly on Thursday, but was still around 1.5% lower for the week.

The draft suggested the new Italian government could ask Europe to relax budget rules and cancel a big chunk of its huge debt.

"The worsening outlook for economic policy, resurfacing anti-euro narratives and the new government's lack of expertise may be more than enough to undermine market confidence - and with it the fragile Italian economic recovery," Federico Santi, analyst at Eurasia group, wrote in a research note.

The euro also sagged on Wednesday but was stable Thursday, holding its ground against other major currencies.

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4. Global market overview: US stock futures were lower early on Thursday, and markets in Europe and Asia were mixed.

The Dow Jones industrial average closed 0.3% higher on Wednesday, while the S&P 500 was up 0.4%, and the Nasdaq gained 0.6%.

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5. Coming this week:
Thursday - JCPenney, Walmart, Nordstrom earnings
Friday - Campbell Soup earnings

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 941120

Reported Deaths: 15315
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion1282511983
Lake633041097
Allen53609758
Hamilton43827447
St. Joseph41906590
Elkhart33545490
Vanderburgh30383448
Tippecanoe26820249
Johnson23609417
Hendricks22250341
Porter21737346
Clark17409229
Madison17366384
Vigo16108281
Monroe14466191
LaPorte14311239
Delaware14070221
Howard13865272
Kosciusko11418135
Hancock10841165
Warrick10674177
Bartholomew10542168
Floyd10430205
Wayne9959226
Grant9130204
Morgan8865160
Boone8389111
Dubois7710123
Dearborn762289
Henry7608130
Noble7413101
Marshall7362128
Cass7176117
Lawrence6957153
Shelby6584111
Jackson656785
Gibson6156107
Harrison603786
Huntington600195
Montgomery5805105
DeKalb574291
Knox5494104
Miami542488
Putnam536768
Clinton533665
Whitley524953
Steuben497268
Wabash483592
Jasper479160
Jefferson470092
Ripley454277
Adams444068
Daviess4169108
Scott405865
White391857
Clay390857
Greene388392
Decatur385296
Wells384983
Fayette374278
Posey359941
Jennings353156
Washington332047
LaGrange321375
Spencer317835
Fountain316555
Randolph312888
Sullivan307449
Owen283863
Starke280064
Fulton277553
Orange275859
Jay254837
Perry251652
Carroll243729
Franklin239338
Rush234130
Vermillion233250
Parke219820
Tipton209655
Pike207639
Blackford168334
Pulaski163551
Crawford146018
Newton144345
Benton142516
Brown135346
Martin128217
Switzerland125810
Warren114616
Union96911
Ohio79711
Unassigned0479

Ohio Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 1365800

Reported Deaths: 21596
CountyCasesDeaths
Franklin1522221560
Cuyahoga1344852327
Hamilton976051320
Montgomery670271141
Summit562091047
Lucas50900863
Butler47417655
Stark41580976
Lorain31567532
Warren30001331
Mahoning26963639
Clermont25628292
Lake24585417
Delaware22313145
Licking20487241
Fairfield20420221
Greene20309272
Trumbull19866509
Medina19796287
Clark17879328
Richland16314234
Portage16130229
Wood15681208
Allen14115256
Miami13786253
Muskingum12641152
Wayne11946238
Columbiana11708241
Tuscarawas10953269
Marion10725148
Pickaway10465129
Scioto10324127
Erie9747171
Ross9436176
Lawrence8755125
Hancock8458141
Ashtabula8317185
Geauga8173156
Belmont8140187
Jefferson7527172
Huron7423128
Union731851
Washington7183120
Athens697165
Sandusky6848134
Darke6756136
Knox6671122
Seneca6358137
Ashland5948113
Auglaize587188
Shelby5727101
Brown564171
Mercer557890
Defiance5483101
Madison543371
Crawford5425114
Highland541581
Fulton530683
Clinton525580
Logan512182
Preble4994110
Putnam4833106
Guernsey470364
Williams459282
Perry449852
Champaign445964
Ottawa436884
Jackson425362
Pike388843
Morrow383851
Fayette375853
Coshocton374766
Adams360675
Hardin359069
Gallia347356
Holmes3259108
Henry324668
Van Wert314670
Hocking301769
Wyandot280658
Carroll262652
Paulding242243
Meigs213942
Monroe189749
Noble169340
Morgan165829
Harrison157940
Vinton138118
Unassigned05
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Decatur
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Sunshine and warmer air return to round out the work week, but the warm-up is brief.
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