Business Report BEFORE THE BELL: First quarter earnings continue to boost markets; Sprint T-Mobile merger aims to beat China to 5G SHARE ON: James Bowler, contributor, Monday, Apr. 30th, 2018 More first quarter earnings reports are expected to keep global markets boosted this week. The MSCI, which measure world markets reported a 1.3 per cent increase for April overall. McDonalds will round up the last of the April earnings reports today. Starting off May will be Apple, which is expected to follow positive reports from similar tech companies like Facebook and Amazon. A $26 billion merger between Sprint and T-Mobile in the states is also keeping the tech sector riding high as the American companies attempt to beat China’s 2020 goal to offer the first 5G network in the world. Traders in Canada will be watching later this week as a GDP update is expected to be released. Across the border, a consumer spending report is coming today, followed by a federal policy update on Wednesday and details on the US unemployment rate on Friday. Experts say investors have started to worry once again about an interest rate increase in the US, and these reports could intensify those concerns. The price of crude is down this morning to 67.34 a barrel following a rally last week. The Loonie is steady at 77.77 cents US.