1510 BST: Market turns
US data turns global stocks into the red and puts a big surge into US 30-year treasury bonds. Existing home sales in the world's biggest economy softened (the pace or annual sales in May is 4.55m down from 4.62m in April and New home prices in the US were up 0.8 percent in April from March ) while the Philadelphia Fed's index of business conditions for June fell to -16.6, well below the Street consensus of 0.0 and last month's reading of -5.8.
The index of leading economic indicators, however, rose +0.3 precent against an expectation of 0.1 percent.
1325 BST: Gold down
Spot gold has fallen more than a full percent to $1,586.69 as investors get their first full-day kick at the commodity can following yesterday's "Operation Twist" decision from the Fed.
1315 BST: Green turn
European markets (FTSE Eurofirst 300) are back into the green after reports that the European Central Bank is considering a change to its existing collateral rules and also to potentially using its own ratings methodology in sovereign debt assessments.
The move - if it comes to completion - will ease a tremendous amount of pressure on peripheral debt markets, particularly Spain, where the A-level rating from Canada's DBRS is the only thing preventing the ECB from applying a devastating 5 percent "haircut" to Spanish government debt that's used as borrowing collateral with the ECB.
1250 BST: UK Bank downgrade?
Many media reports repeating a Sky News Tweet that Moody's is preparing to annouce its planned review of ratings for the UK banking sector later today. The Moody's move is part of a global overhaul of bank ratings and has been widely expected by the markets, although its specfic timing has remained a mystery.
The list of banks which could face ratings action are: HSBC (Aa2) Barclays (A1) RBS (A2) and Lloyds Banking Group (A2).
1230 BST: MSCI Grexit
MSCI Inc, the index and data provider, told Retuers that any move to drop its Greece-related index into the "Emerging Markets" category could take as long as two years, but could be done "within weeks" if the debt-stricken nation were to adopt capital controls.
In a statement issued last night, MSCI said its MSCI Greece index is "structurally no longer in-line with Developed Markets size requirements". The measure has lost around 93 percent of its value in the past five years and only includes two solvent companies. It comprises around 0.03 percent of the company's flagship MSIC World Index. It was around 0.16 percent two years ago.
1135 BST: Good first move?
A "Leftist Party Official" has told Reuters that the new Greek coalition government has agreed to seek an extension to unemployment benefits and limit public sector layoffs. Should make the Germans very happy.
1030 BST: Spanish bank audit
We should find out more - but not all - of the capital requirements for Spain's banking system with the publication of a report by private consultants (hired by the government) Oliver Wyman and Roland Berger. Press reports suggest the final tab will be anywhere between €70bn and €150bn. The truth lies, as ever, between the poles but it's worth remembering that today's figure must be added to the €84bn provision that was made by the government back in February.
Here's what RBS analyst Prateek Datta concludes in a research note published Thursday:
In essence, all of this points to the fact that the EUR100bn of bailout money is not an excessively large number, as it may initially have seemed. We previously wrote that the Spanish government does not currently have the resources to pay for all banks. We estimate that banks in Spain require EUR134bn of capital, although we acknowledge that this can partly be raised via earnings. We continue to believe that burden sharing for sub bonds in local Spanish banks will be necessary and that Spain will require a full ESM aid package. We see further downgrade risk for Spain, leading to further complications for banks due to added collateral demands with the ECB and clearing houses.
1010 BST: Contrasting fortunes
France sold €2.7bn in 2-year bonds (BTANS) at a priced that gives investors a 0.54 precent yield to maturity. That's a full 4.5 percent cheaper than Spain's similar auction last week.
0950 BST: Spanish auction
Another €2.22bn added to the pile at hideously expensive rates: the €700m 2014 priced to yield 4.706 percent: the €918m 2015 priced to yield 5.547 precent and the €602m 2017 bond priced to yield 6.072 percent. Bid-to-cover ratios (ie, demand) were solid but not fantastic, particularly given the rates on offer.
The biggest increase (in raw basis points) was for the 2014 tranche - it's 267 basis points dearer than at the previous auction. Again, unsustainable short-term funding costs for an economy that's taking on nearly 10 percent of GDP to stablize a bank system that can't lend and is staggering under an unemployment rate of nearly 25 percent.
0930 BST: Retail sales improve
UK retail sales for May rise 1.4 percent from Apil and 2.4 percent from May of 2011. Both figures best estimates from the Street (1.2 percent and 2 percent respectively).
Sterling is a bit stronger at 80.63 against the Euro (session high). Figures could reflect a weak base affect (weak sales in May of 2011) and soft sterling (it attracts more foreign visitors as the tourist season begins).
0925 BST: Better late?
Apologies for the delay in getting up-and-running, but we're back at it now that we've solved some significant technical issues. We've got UK retail sales for May coming in a few moments and a testing Spanish bond auction in about an hour's time - and just ahead of what could be a detailed formal request for funds by the government to the EU to shore-up its banking system.