Oracle released better-than-expected results on Thursday. During the second quarter, revenues increased by 6% to $9.6bn, slightly higher than estimates of $9.57bn. This uptick was partly due to a 44% surge in total cloud revenue to $1.5bn. Overall, Oracle saw net income grow to $2.23bn, or 52 cents per share, up from $2.03bn, or 48 cents per share, a year ago. However, on an adjusted basis, earnings per share stood at 70 cents, surpassing forecasts of 68 cents. Looking forward, Oracle expects third quarter revenues to increase by between 2% and 4%, while non-GAAP earnings are set to come in at between 68 cents per share and 70 cents per share on a constant currency basis.
In currencies, the rand traded in a stable fashion against most major global currencies following the Bank of England’s and European Central Bank’s decisions to keep interest rates unchanged. After a previous close of R13.45/$ on Wednesday, the rand got off to a poor start dropping to a low of R13.536/$ at 09:50. However, by 16:10, the local currency was at a high R13.391/$. After erasing some of its gains overnight, the rand was last at around the R13.50/$ level this morning. Investor’s focus will now be on the ANC’s national elective conference which is set to start this weekend.
In Asia, markets are lower, negatively affected by the overnight decline on Wall Street and concerns about the progress of US tax reforms. The Hang Seng led the region’s losses, down 1.04%, with the index set to extend yesterday’s 0.19% decline and end lower for the third time in four days. Meanwhile, the Japanese Nikkei was on track to extend its losses to a fourth consecutive day, down 0.88% at 22,494.76 index points. The Shanghai Composite had fallen 0.85% by the break, while the Australian ASX outperformed other regional indices after it only shed 0.13%.
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