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US markets return from break

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U.S. markets returned from Good Friday break and started the week mostly higher Monday, as investors face a big week for corporate quarterly results and economic data. The Dow Jones Industrial Average slipped 48.49 points, or 0.2%, to 26,511.05, while the S&P 500 index gained 2.94 points, or 0.1%, to 2,907.97. The Nasdaq Composite index advanced 17.20 points, or 0.2%, to 8,015.27. Oil prices rallied, with West Texas Intermediate crude futures up more than 2% after reports that the U.S. will stop issuing waivers for countries that import Iranian oil.

European and Maltese markets remained closed for Easter Monday.

No sanction exemptions for Iranian oil

Oil prices hit 2019 highs on Tuesday after the United States demanded that buyers of Iranian oil stop purchases by May 1 or face sanctions, ending six months of waivers which allowed Iran’s eight biggest buyers, most of them in Asia, to continue importing limited volumes. The U.S. government has this year repeatedly said it wants to cut Iran’s oil exports below 1 million barrels per day (bpd) or even to zero.

Before the re-imposition of sanctions last year, Iran was the fourth-largest producer among the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) at around 3 million barrels per day, but April exports have shrunk to below 1 million barrels per day, according to ship tracking and analyst data. Brent crude futures were up 0.7 percent from their last close and their highest level since November 2018.

Apple, Amazon’s biggest cloud services user

Apple is spending more than $30 million a month on Amazon’s cloud, making it one of the biggest Amazon Web Services client. Apple’s cloud expenditure reflects the company’s determination to deliver online services like iCloud quickly and reliably, even if it must depend on a rival to do so.

Amazon Web Services is a major part of Amazon’s business. In 2018, AWS delivered $25.66 billion in revenue, or 11 percent of Amazon’s total annual revenue, and nearly 59 percent of Amazon’s operating income. Even though Apple is one of the top AWS customers, its payments make up a tiny slice of Amazon’s overall revenue.

This article was issued by Peter Petrov, Trader at Calamatta Cuschieri. For more information visit, www.cc.com.mt. The information, view and opinions provided in this article are being provided solely for educational and informational purposes and should not be construed as investment advice, advice concerning particular investments or investment decisions, or tax or legal advice. Calamatta Cuschieri Investment Services Ltd has not verified and consequently neither warrants the accuracy nor the veracity of any information, views or opinions appearing on this website.