Europe Stay updated with Business News, Pakistan news, Current world news and latest world news with Business Recorder http://www.brecorder.com/markets/equity/europe.html Mon, 23 Jan 2017 12:33:26 +0000 Joomla! 1.5 - Open Source Content Management en-gb European shares ease ahead of Trump inauguration http://www.brecorder.com/markets/equity/europe/335237-european-shares-ease-ahead-of-trump-inauguration.html http://www.brecorder.com/markets/equity/europe/335237-european-shares-ease-ahead-of-trump-inauguration.html imageMILAN: European shares fell, posting their biggest weekly loss since before Donald Trump won the U.S presidential election in November, as investors grew cautious before his inauguration.

The STOXX 600 closed 0.1 percent lower, marking a five-day loss of almost 1 percent. Britain's FTSE slipped 0.1 percent and posted a weekly decline of 1.9 percent. European markets closed before Trump's inauguration speech.

The pan-European index has gained around 7 percent over the last two months, but it has slipped from its early January peak amid concerns Trump may struggle to deliver on his stimulus promises.

"I think markets now are attuned to expecting the unexpected, but by definition it means that there can be surprises along the way," Geoffrey Yu, head of investment office UK, at UBS, said.

"This is a very unorthodox presidency, so we just won't know and markets didn't pre-position themselves for tweets, either." The broader market was weakened by some disappointing earnings updates, although merger and acquisition talk helped support the telecoms sector.

British pharma stock AstraZeneca was 3.4 percent weaker, the biggest faller on the FTSE 100 index after rival Bristol-Myers Squibb Co decided not to seek accelerated US approval for a combination of two immunotherapy drugs as an initial treatment for lung cancer. The fall weighed on Europe's health care index, down 0.8 percent. Danish insurer Tryg was also among the biggest STOXX losers, down 2.9 percent after its fourth-quarter profit missed expectations.

Britain's AA also dropped, falling 6.2 percent on worries about costs. Energy stocks were among the biggest gainers, however, with shares in Subsea 7, Amec Foster Wheeler and SBM Offshore all rising between 4.7 percent to 5.4 percent. Amec Foster Wheeler benefited from a SocGen upgrade to "buy", citing the potential for the oil company's shares to re-rate.

TDC also rose, up 3.9 percent after a report in Dagens Industri said telecom operator Telia was considering a bid for the Danish company, which is itself exploring a takeover of Swedish cable TV company Com Hem .

Telia and TDC both declined to comment on the report. Gains in TDC drove Europe's STOXX telco index up 0.6 percent.

Banks were also firmer, with Commerzbank rising 2.8 percent after a price target upgrade from analysts at Deutsche Bank.

Shares in Italy's UBI Banca were the biggest fallers among the banking stocks, ending 2.2 percent lower after DBRS cut the trend on UBI Banca's debt ratings to negative following its acquisition of three banks.

Copyright Reuters, 2017

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s.rs96@yahoo.com (Shoaib-ur-Rehman Siddiqui) Europe Fri, 20 Jan 2017 17:30:40 +0000
Stocks rise before Trump takeover http://www.brecorder.com/markets/equity/europe/335228-stocks-rise-before-trump-takeover.html http://www.brecorder.com/markets/equity/europe/335228-stocks-rise-before-trump-takeover.html imageLONDON: Most European stock markets and Wall Street climbed Friday before Donald Trump's inauguration, with markets hoping that the US president's speech will expand on his planned economic policy.

London's benchmark FTSE 100 was flat in afternoon trading, supported by a weak pound boosting exporters' share prices and thanks to some positive Chinese data, traders said.

In the eurozone, Frankfurt's DAX 30 index won 0.1 percent and the Paris CAC 40 gained 0.3 percent compared with Thursday's closing levels.

Wall Street opened higher, with the Dow climbing 0.4 percent.

"In focus today will be the inauguration of Donald Trump... with investors hoping that his speech comprehensively outlines his policy plans for the next four years," said Accendo Markets analyst Mike van Dulken.

"Financial deregulation, infrastructure spending and tax reforms will be the key policy topics markets will be hoping receive some dedicated airtime."

While he promised a big-spending, tax-cutting drive to fuel the world's top economy, the tycoon has failed to provide any detail, leading to worries about his ability to deliver.

The dollar meanwhile recovered, having slipped after Federal Reserve boss Janet Yellen this week indicated that the US central bank would take a wait-and-see approach to monetary policy, suggesting any rate hikes this year could be slow.

The dollar has soared since November on bets Trump's fiscal policies would fan inflation and force the Fed to raise borrowing costs.

- Chinese growth -

Ahead of Trump's big day, stocks won support from data showing that China's economy enjoyed its first growth pick-up in two years.

The Chinese economy expanded by 6.8 percent in the final quarter of last year, the first improvement since the end of 2014, figures released Friday showed.

While China's National Bureau of Statistics welcomed the data, it stressed that "the domestic and external conditions are still complicated and severe".

Elsewhere on Friday, the pound slid after official data showed British retail sales unexpectedly slumped 1.9 percent in December from the previous month, fuelling worries over Brexit.

"Sterling is taking a pasting after a pretty shoddy set of retail sales figures for December," noted ETX Capital senior market analyst Neil Wilson.

"The pound... dived below $1.23 immediately following the numbers, which showed the fastest pace of sales decline in five years."

Sterling has endured a volatile week, slumping to three-month low points before and after British Prime Minister Theresa May fleshed out her plans for Britain exiting the European Union.

London - FTSE 100: FLAT at 7,208.60 points

Frankfurt - DAX 30: UP 0.1 percent at 11,611.73

Paris - CAC 40: UP 0.3 percent at 4,855.18

EURO STOXX 50: UP 0.3 percent at 3,300.81

New York - Dow: UP 0.4 percent at 19,811.29

Tokyo - Nikkei 225: UP 0.3 percent at 19,137.91 (close)

Shanghai - Composite: UP 0.7 percent at 3,123.14 (close)

Hong Kong - Hang Seng: DOWN 0.7 percent at 22,885.91 (close)

Euro/dollar: DOWN at $1.0662 from $1.0665

Pound/dollar: DOWN at $1.2306 from $1.2338

Dollar/yen: UP at 115.09 yen from 114.84 yen

Oil - West Texas Intermediate: UP $1.28 at $53.40 per barrel

Oil - Brent North Sea: UP $1.33 at $55.49

Copyright AFP (Agence France-Press), 2017

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s.rs96@yahoo.com (Shoaib-ur-Rehman Siddiqui) Europe Fri, 20 Jan 2017 15:26:12 +0000
EM stocks snap 3-week winning streak ahead of Trump inauguration http://www.brecorder.com/markets/equity/europe/335209-em-stocks-snap-3-week-winning-streak-ahead-of-trump-inauguration.html http://www.brecorder.com/markets/equity/europe/335209-em-stocks-snap-3-week-winning-streak-ahead-of-trump-inauguration.html imageLONDON: Emerging stocks fell on Friday and were set to end the week down, snapping a three-week winning streak, as risk appetite eased ahead of US President-elect Donald Trump's inauguration, while currencies struggled to make headway.

Some investors worry that Trump's arrival in the White House will herald a rise in protectionism, with the introduction of tariffs that could harm export-dependent economies in the developing world. "Trade protectionism is an impending risk," said Jakob Christensen, head of emerging markets research at Danske Bank, highlighting the possibility of a deepening stand-off between the United States and China.

The tough talk from Trump and his incoming administration against China has set the stage for showdowns on everything from security to trade, with Trump threatening to label China a currency manipulator. "The Chinese response has been muted so far as they have been waiting for Trump to make formal changes.

Now there is a chance of concrete measures there is a risk of escalation, which would be negative for emerging markets, as global risk sentiment would weaken," Christensen said.

The benchmark emerging equities index was down 0.4 percent and set to end the week down around 0.5 percent after three weeks of gains.

Asian manufacturing markets bore the brunt of the losses, with South Korea down 0.35 percent and Hong Kong shares down 0.7 percent.

Indian stocks fell around 1 percent, dragged down by a 6.4 percent fall in Axis Bank after a 73 percent plunge in profits. Chinese mainland shares bucked the trend, gaining 0.7 percent after data showed the economy grew at a forecast-beating 6.8 percent in the fourth quarter, albeit driven by higher government spending and record bank lending.

"With tailwinds from policy stimulus now fading, we expect clearer signs of a renewed slowdown to emerge during the next couple of quarters," Julian Evans-Pritchard, China economist at Capital Economics, said in a note.

Eastern Europe, which is more reliant on trade with Western Europe, also rose. Hungarian shares added 0.5 percent after robust wage growth and Prague stocks were up 0.3 percent.

Emerging market currencies struggled as the dollar firmed 0.2 percent against a basket of currencies. The South African rand led the fallers, down 0.3 percent, while the Chinese yuan fell 0.15 percent.

Short-term funding costs in China fell sharply after the central bank pumped a record amount of liquidity into the markets, in an apparent attempt to avert a cash crunch ahead of the week-long Lunar New Year holiday.

The Turkish lira, which has come under sustained selling pressure all month, was down 0.16 percent.

The central bank held another forex depo auction aimed at shoring up the currency, but investors are looking for a sharp rate hike when policymakers meet next week.

The Russian rouble firmed 0.2 percent after oil prices rose 1.2 percent towards $55 a barrel.

Russia's economy minister said the economy could grow by 2 percent in 2017 as long as there were no external shocks such as a renewed fall in oil prices.

The trajectory of the dollar remains key for emerging market currencies, after falling almost 2 percent so far in January.

A lack of detail around Trump's promised fiscal stimulus package and his comments that the dollar is too strong has made some question whether the rally that took hold after his election win is running on air.

"The market is in wait and see mode - there needs to be some clarity on the fiscal side fairly soon, or the market, which has priced in part of this fiscal stimulus, will lose patience, which could mean lower interest rates and a weaker dollar," Christensen said.

Copyright Reuters, 2017

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s.rs96@yahoo.com (Shoaib-ur-Rehman Siddiqui) Europe Fri, 20 Jan 2017 12:28:33 +0000
Draghi sends eurozone stocks higher, euro lower http://www.brecorder.com/markets/equity/europe/335117-draghi-sends-eurozone-stocks-higher-euro-lower.html http://www.brecorder.com/markets/equity/europe/335117-draghi-sends-eurozone-stocks-higher-euro-lower.html imageLONDON: European stock markets rebounded while the euro slumped after ECB chief Mario Draghi signalled that the time had not yet come to wind down unprecedented stimulus measures.

Meanwhile, the dollar shot higher after data showed construction of new homes surged and December and first-time claims for unemployment benefits fell in mid-January.

In the eurozone, Frankfurt's DAX 30 index rose 0.3 percent and the Paris CAC 40 added 0.1 percent in afternoon trading.

As predicted, at its first policy meeting of 2017 the ECB kept interest rates at record lows and made no changes to its asset-purchasing scheme, which is designed to encourage spending and investment in a bid to drive up growth and inflation.

The mass bond-buying programme is already scheduled to slow from 80 billion to 60 billion euros per month from April.

"I am pretty sure that it will come the time, (and) then we will have to have a very deep, very careful discussion and analysis of the situation. But we are not there," Draghi told reporters at a Frankfurt press conference.

However recent data have shown that inflation in the eurozone shot up to 1.1 in December, up from 0.6 percent in November, prompting critics to say the time for an exit from stimulus is approaching.

But Draghi was at pains to stress the jump was mainly down to rising oil prices, and that core inflation -- which excludes volatile energy and food prices -- remained weak.

He also emphasised that "risks coming from global uncertainty" could weigh on the region's fragile recovery, confirming the need "for a continued very substantial degree of monetary accommodation".

In Asia Thursday a weaker yen pushed up Japanese share prices, with optimism buoyed by remarks from US Federal Reserve boss Janet Yellen on the economy -- although traders moved cautiously before Trump's inauguration Friday.

Dealers took a speech by Yellen on Wednesday as a hint that US rates will rise further this year.

In the two months after Trump's November election victory, the dollar soared against all other currencies on expectations his big-spending, tax-cutting plans will fan growth, ramp up inflation and force the Fed to lift borrowing costs.

But growing uncertainty in the past two weeks, made worse by a lack of policy detail from the president-elect, has sent investors scurrying back out of the US unit until they see signs of firm plans.

However, Yellen breathed life back into the greenback Wednesday with a speech in which she said the US economy was meeting the central bank's inflation and employment goals, and was confident it would push on.

That view received confirmation with the positive housing and unemployment data on Thursday morning, sending the dollar higher. US stocks opened flat, however.

Oil prices meanwhile rose Thursday as energy watchdog the IEA said deeper cuts in OPEC oil production are likely this month as producers increasingly implement a recent key deal to tackle oversupplies.

- Key figures around 1450 GMT -

===============================

London - FTSE 100: DOWN 0.4 percent at 7,216.59 points

Frankfurt - DAX 30: UP 0.3 percent at 11,629.34

Paris - CAC 40: UP 0.1 percent at 4,859.90

EURO STOXX 50: UP 0.5 percent at 3,302.68

New York - Dow: FLAT at 19,801.75

Tokyo - Nikkei 225: UP 0.9 percent at 19,072.25 (close)

Shanghai - Composite: DOWN 0.4 percent at 3,101.30 (close)

Hong Kong - Hang Seng: DOWN 0.2 percent at 23,049.96 (close)

Euro/dollar: DOWN at $1.0608 from $1.0629

Pound/dollar: UP at $1.2312 from $1.2258

Dollar/yen: UP at 115.26 yen from 114.65 yen

Oil - West Texas Intermediate: UP 63 cents at $52.52 per barrel

Oil - Brent North Sea: UP 59 cents at $54.51

Copyright AFP (Agence France-Press), 2017

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imad_kueconomist@yahoo.com (Imaduddin) Europe Thu, 19 Jan 2017 15:48:55 +0000
European stock markets rebound at open http://www.brecorder.com/markets/equity/europe/334981-european-stock-markets-rebound-at-open.html http://www.brecorder.com/markets/equity/europe/334981-european-stock-markets-rebound-at-open.html imageLONDON: Europe's main stock markets recovered at the start of trading Wednesday, with London's FTSE 100 up 0.5 percent to 7,256.31 points after falling sharply the previous session.

In the eurozone, Frankfurt's DAX 30 index grew 0.5 percent to 11,592.12 points and the Paris CAC 40 won 0.3 percent to 4,874.31 compared with the close on Tuesday.

The FTSE had closed down 1.5 percent Tuesday as the pound shot higher after British Prime Minister Theresa May fleshed out her plans for Brexit.

A stronger pound weighs on the share prices of multi-nationals trading on the FTSE.

Copyright AFP (Agence France-Press), 2017

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parvezjabri@yahoo.com (Parvez Jabri) Europe Wed, 18 Jan 2017 11:12:37 +0000
Markets tread lower before key Brexit speech http://www.brecorder.com/markets/equity/europe/334906-markets-tread-lower-before-key-brexit-speech.html http://www.brecorder.com/markets/equity/europe/334906-markets-tread-lower-before-key-brexit-speech.html imageLONDON: Europe's main stock markets slid Tuesday but the pound rebounded somewhat, as British Prime Minister Theresa May was set to make a hotly-anticipated speech on Brexit strategy.

London stocks declined as investors reacted also to news that annual inflation jumped to a two-and-a-half year peak at 1.6 percent in December.

Britain's premier is expected to say she favours a clean break from the European Union, dismissing a "half-in, half-out" Brexit deal with Brussels.

May, speaking at around 1145 GMT, is likely to give further signals that Britain is heading to what analysts call a "hard Brexit".

"Not partial membership of the European Union, associate membership of the European Union, or anything that leaves us half-in, half-out," the prime minister will say, according to an extract of her speech circulated in advance to the media by Downing Street.

"We do not seek to adopt a model already enjoyed by other countries. We do not seek to hold on to bits of membership as we leave," she will add in a speech due in central London.

A hard Brexit would see Britain's departure from the single market or tariff-free zone, while also ending the free movement of people.

"European shares are trading moderately lower... ahead of May's speech where she is expected to announce her Brexit strategy," said Markus Huber at trading firm City of London Markets.

"Whilst traders are eagerly awaiting her speech due to multiple leaks over the past few days, it might very well be that most of what the speech will contain is already well known in advance and therefore its impact on stocks and the pound should limited."

Sterling had slumped Monday on reports that May was ready to take the country out of the European Union in a hard Brexit.

The pound had collapsed to $1.1986, its lowest level since October's "flash crash" that had sent it to a 31-year low of $1.1841.

However, the British currency rebounded slightly on Tuesday to hold above $1.21.

"After such a sharp fall yesterday it seems to be in rebound mode at the moment," noted Spreadex analyst Connor Campbell.

"The fact that the currency knows much of what May is going to say likely helps, as does the increase in clarity this speech will hopefully bring about."

Asian investors meanwhile moved warily Tuesday before May's speech on and ahead of Donald Trump's inauguration on Friday.

While world markets soared in the months after Trump's November election win, he has yet to flesh out precise details of his spending and tax plans for the world's number one economy.

There is also unease about his campaign rhetoric in which he promised to tear up trade deals and slap tariffs on China, which has already hit back at his comments, fuelling worries of a possible trade war.

- Key figures around 1030 GMT -

===============================

London - FTSE 100: DOWN 0.3 percent at 7,303.10 points

Frankfurt - DAX 30: DOWN 0.7 percent at 11,477

Paris - CAC 40: DOWN 0.5 percent at 4,857.20

EURO STOXX 50: DOWN 0.4 percent at 3,280

Tokyo - Nikkei 225: DOWN 1.5 percent at 18,813.53 (close)

Shanghai - Composite: UP 0.2 percent at 3,108.77 (close)

Hong Kong - Hang Seng: UP 0.5 percent at 22,840.97 (close)

New York - Dow: Closed for a public holiday

Pound/dollar: UP at $1.2161 from $1.2055

Euro/dollar: UP at $1.0678 from $1.0602

Dollar/yen: DOWN at 113.03 yen from 114.04 yen

Oil - West Texas Intermediate: UP 61 cents at $52.98 per barrel

Oil - Brent North Sea: UP 51 cents at $56.37

Copyright AFP (Agence France-Press), 2017

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imad_kueconomist@yahoo.com (Imaduddin) Europe Tue, 17 Jan 2017 12:34:43 +0000
European stock markets drop before key Brexit speech http://www.brecorder.com/markets/equity/europe/334895-european-stock-markets-drop-before-key-brexit-speech.html http://www.brecorder.com/markets/equity/europe/334895-european-stock-markets-drop-before-key-brexit-speech.html imageLONDON: Europe's main stock markets slid in opening trade on Tuesday, as British Prime Minister Theresa May was set to make a hotly-anticipated speech on Brexit strategy.

In initial deals, London's FTSE 100 benchmark index of top blue-chip companies shed almost 0.3 percent to 7,308.49 points, compared with Monday's close.

In the eurozone, Frankfurt's DAX 30 index dropped 0.3 percent to 11,521.50 points and the Paris CAC 40 lost 0.4 percent to 4,865.19.

Britain's premier is expected Tuesday to say she favours a clean break from the European Union, dismissing a "half-in, half-out" Brexit deal with Brussels.

May is likely to give further signals that Britain is heading to what analysts call a hard Brexit.

"Not partial membership of the European Union, associate membership of the European Union, or anything that leaves us half-in, half-out," the prime minister will say, according to an extract of her speech circulated in advance to the media by Downing Street.

"We do not seek to adopt a model already enjoyed by other countries. We do not seek to hold on to bits of membership as we leave," she will add in a key speech due in central London later.

A so-called "hard Brexit" would see Britain's departure from the single market or tariff-free zone, while also ending the free movement of people.

"European shares a trading moderately lower this morning ahead of May's speech where she is expected to announce her Brexit strategy," said Markus Huber at trading firm City of London Markets.

"Whilst traders are eagerly awaiting her speech due to multiple leaks over the past few days, it might very well be that most of what the speech will contain is already well known in advance and therefore its impact on stocks and the pound should limited."

Copyright AFP (Agence France-Press), 2017

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parvezjabri@yahoo.com (Parvez Jabri) Europe Tue, 17 Jan 2017 10:17:30 +0000
Polish bonds firm after credit ratings affirmed http://www.brecorder.com/markets/equity/europe/334834-polish-bonds-firm-after-credit-ratings-affirmed.html http://www.brecorder.com/markets/equity/europe/334834-polish-bonds-firm-after-credit-ratings-affirmed.html imageBUDAPEST/WARSAW: Polish government bonds firmed on Monday after Fitch affirmed the country's 'A-' credit rating on Friday, with stable outlook, and Moody's did not update its own rating.

Some investors had feared a downgrade.

Governments in Central Europe lift spending and cut taxes to help their economies, after central banks have reached their limits in economic stimulus, cutting rates to record lows.

Rate hikes are not on the agenda yet even though inflation is picking up, US interest rates are expected to rise further and the ECB tapers its own stimulus.

Any change in Polish rates would at this time shake its macroeconomic stability, Polish central banker Lukasz Hardt told the daily Dziennik Gazeta.

Polish bond yields fell 2-3 basis points by 1404 GMT GMT, with 10-year papers trading at 3.61 percent.

Demand for bonds was helped by a recommendation from the Financial Stability Committee (KSF) that banks should have to put more capital aside if they hold foreign exchange-denominated mortgages.

The new rules could limit lending and encourage bond buying, mBank economists said in a note.

The same news knocked down Polish bank sector stocks.

MBank led the decline, falling by 2.7 percent, while Warsaw's bluechip equities index rose 0.6 percent.

"If we assume all negative factors mentioned by the KSF, then a part of banks will have a shortage of capital," said Kamil Stolarski, equity analyst at Haitong Bank.

This mainly concerns banks with the biggest exposure to FX loans: Getin Noble Bank, Bank Millennium and mBank, he said, adding that BZ WBK and PKO BP could also be close to the minimum capital requirement.

Romania sold more six-year bonds than planned at an auction even though the average yield ticked up to 3.14 percent from Friday's 3.12 percent closing bid.

The Czech yield curve steepened, with the 2-year yield dropping 8 basis points to -1.197 percent. The 10-year yield rose 14 basis points to 0.468 percent.

Czech assets have drawn strong demand in the past weeks due to expectations that in the middle of the year the central bank will abandon its cap which keeps the crown weaker than 27 against the euro.

The bank's Govenor Jiri Rusnok said on Monday that it was looking at the inflation trend rather than any specific inflation rate when considering when to lift the cap.

Elsewhere, the Serbian dinar hit a 3-month low at 124 versus the euro, even though the Belgrade central bank continued to buy it in the market.

Copyright Reuters, 2017

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s.rs96@yahoo.com (Shoaib-ur-Rehman Siddiqui) Europe Mon, 16 Jan 2017 19:57:38 +0000
Stocks retreat as pound tanks on Brexit fear http://www.brecorder.com/markets/equity/europe/334821-stocks-retreat-as-pound-tanks-on-brexit-fear.html http://www.brecorder.com/markets/equity/europe/334821-stocks-retreat-as-pound-tanks-on-brexit-fear.html imageLONDON: The pound slumped Monday on reports British Prime Minister Theresa May was ready to take the country out of the European Union in a so-called "hard Brexit".

Sterling's weakness sent London's FTSE 100 index to a fresh record high, although the index later fell back and closed with a slight loss, ending a record 14-session winning streak.

"The main action today has been on the currency market with the pound sliding to its lowest levels since the October flash crash, below 1.2000 against the US dollar, as markets price in further uncertainty ahead of tomorrows scheduled speech by UK Prime Minister Theresa May about how the UK intends to conduct its Brexit negotiations," said Michael Hewson, chief market analyst at CMC Markets UK.

Sterling on Monday plunged to $1.1986, its lowest level since October's "flash crash" that sent it to a 31-year low of $1.1841.

The pound has fallen sharply since Britain voted in June to exit the European Union, pushing up share prices of multi-nationals on the FTSE index of 100 firms including the likes of energy giants Shell and BP.

"Weakness in sterling has been the primary means by which the FTSE 100 has notched up its record-breaking run," said Chris Beauchamp, chief market analyst at IG trading group, after the index hit a record high at 7,354.14 points following a string of peaks over the past few weeks.

It was down 0.15 percent to 7,327.13 points at the closing bell, snapping a winning streak that began before the New Year.

In the eurozone Monday, Frankfurt's DAX 30 index shed 0.6 percent and the Paris CAC 40 fell 0.8 percent.

Most Asian stock markets retreated also Monday as investors nervously await US President-elect Donald Trump's inauguration speech Friday, having been left disappointed at his lack of detail on economic policy at a news conference last week.

US markets were closed for Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.

May on Monday won endorsement from Trump over her Brexit course, with him saying that Britain leaving the EU would "end up as a great thing", adding in an interview with The Times newspaper that he would work for a trade deal with post-Brexit Britain "quickly and done properly".

Trump's comments did little to reassure investors, however, following reports in British media over the weekend that May is planning to announce a hard line on Brexit in a major speech on Tuesday.

"Wind the clock back twelve months and it was concerns about the Chinese economy that was prompting a significant period of volatility in both currency markets, and stock markets," analyst Hewson added Monday.

"As we head into 2017, while concerns about the Chinese economy have taken a back seat, it is Brexit as well as the impeding inauguration of Donald Trump... that is currently front of mind, in what looks set to be another choppy week for financial markets."

World equities surged after Trump's election win in November on bets his plans for big infrastructure spending and tax cuts would fire the world's top economy, and in turn the global economy.

But the lack of any definitive plan at last week's briefing left many scratching their heads and worrying he might not fulfill his promises.

In Asia on Monday, Tokyo's stock market ended one percent lower as a pick-up in the yen against the dollar hit exporters, traders said.

- Key figures around 1630 GMT -

===============================

London - FTSE 100: DOWN 0.15 percent at 7,327.13 points (close)

Frankfurt - DAX 30: DOWN 0.6 percent at 11,554.71 (close)

Paris - CAC 40: DOWN 0.8 percent at 4,882.18 (close)

EURO STOXX 50: DOWN 0.8 percent at 3,297.63

Tokyo - Nikkei 225: DOWN 1.0 percent at 19,095.24 (close)

Shanghai - Composite: DOWN 0.3 percent at 3,103.43 (close)

Hong Kong - Hang Seng: DOWN 1.0 percent at 22,718.15 (close)

New York - Dow: (closed)

Pound/dollar: DOWN at $1.2055 from $1.2190

Euro/dollar: DOWN at $1.0602 from $1.0639

Dollar/yen: DOWN at 114.04 yen from 114.53 yen

Oil - West Texas Intermediate: DOWN 10 cents at $52.27 per barrel

Oil - Brent North Sea: DOWN 06 cents at $55.39

Copyright AFP (Agence France-Press), 2017

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imad_kueconomist@yahoo.com (Imaduddin) Europe Mon, 16 Jan 2017 17:34:18 +0000
Investors turn wary as Brexit, Trump uncertainty grows http://www.brecorder.com/markets/equity/europe/334804-investors-turn-wary-as-brexit-trump-uncertainty-grows.html http://www.brecorder.com/markets/equity/europe/334804-investors-turn-wary-as-brexit-trump-uncertainty-grows.html

imageLONDON: Investors sold sterling and stocks in Europe and Asia on Monday, seeking shelter in gold and the Japanese yen as uncertainty over Britain's departure from the European Union and the policies of US President-elect Donald Trump curbed appetite for risk.

The dollar rose, except against the yen, rebounding after suffering its worst week since November, when it was hit by a lack of clarity over what Trump, whose inauguration is on Friday, will do once he assumes office. US markets were closed for a holiday, potentially exacerbating price moves in thinner than normal trade.

The price of gold, a frequently sought haven in uncertain times, hit its highest level since November.

"(The movement) shows that people are looking ahead this week with Trump's inauguration and discussions on Brexit.

There is a lot of uncertainty moving forward," said Brian Lan, managing director at Singapore-based gold dealer GoldSilver Central Yields on low-risk German government bonds fell, but those on Italian equivalents rose after rating agency DBRS cut Italy's credit rating after markets closed on Friday, a move that could raise borrowing costs for the country's banks. But the eye-catching mover was sterling, a day before a speech by British Prime Minister Theresa May.

Media reported that she would lay out an exit from the EU that would see Britain lose access to the bloc's single market.

The pound fell as low as $1.1983 in thin early Asian trade, which, barring a sudden "flash crash" in October, was its weakest against the dollar in 32 years. Investors will scrutinise M

ay's speech for clues to whether she plans to prioritise immigration controls in a "hard Brexit" that some analysts say could hurt the economy.

The fall in sterling, which makes UK exports cheaper, has contributed to an unprecedented 14-day rally in the blue-chip FTSE 100 stock index.

The index fell marginally on Monday but still outperformed continental European markets.

The main STOXX 600 index fell 0.7 percent, as declines in autos and banks offset a rally in eyewear makers Luxottica and Essilor, who agreed a 46 billion-euro merger.

German carmakers BMW, Daimler and VW fell 2 percent after Trump warned he would impose a 35 percent border tax on vehicles imported to the US market.

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan eased 0.6 percent, Japan's Nikkei lost 1 percent as the strong yen hit exporters. Sterling last traded at $1.2043, down 1.1 percent on the day.

The euro was up 0.6 percent at 87.95 pence while the yen was up 0.8 percent at 137.45 to the pound.

"Every time there's hard Brexit headlines, that triggers a fresh bout of selling," MUFG currency analyst Lee Hardman said.

"The fact that the sell-offs usually happen during periods in which there's less liquidity increases the risk we could have a sharper sell-off (today), but as we saw in the flash crash that doesn't mean that's fundamentally justified," he added.

The dollar index, which measures the US currency against six of its peers, rose 0.4 percent.

The euro fell 0.5 percent to $1.0592 while the yen, another perceived safe haven investment, rose 0.4 percent to 114.07 per dollar. US markets are closed on Monday for a holiday.

German 10-year bond yields fell 1.9 basis points to 0.25 percent.

Italian 10-year yields, by contrast, rose 2.7 bps to 1.93 percent.

ITALY DOWNGRADED

Italy's downgrade will mean Italian banks will have to pay more to borrow money from the European Central Bank when they use the country's sovereign bonds as collateral. It may also make Italian debt less attractive for foreign buyers.

Oil held steady, though doubts that large oil producers will cut output, as agreed by the Organization of the Oil Producing Countries and others, put prices under pressure Brent, the international benchmark, last traded at $55.29 a barrel, down 16 cents on the day.

Copyright Reuters, 2017

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s.rs96@yahoo.com (Shoaib-ur-Rehman Siddiqui) Europe Mon, 16 Jan 2017 14:26:08 +0000
Stock markets firmer ahead of weekend http://www.brecorder.com/markets/equity/europe/334656-stock-markets-firmer-ahead-of-weekend.html http://www.brecorder.com/markets/equity/europe/334656-stock-markets-firmer-ahead-of-weekend.html imageLONDON: Europe's main stock markets ended the week in an upbeat mood Friday, with London topping a new high, and prices on Wall Street modestly higher on the back of favourable results from banks.

"The FTSE 100 notched up another all-time high to round off a record-breaking week of gains," said Jasper Lawler at London Capital Group.

A steady opening on Wall Street, buoyed by a spate of solid bank earnings reports, helped prop up the European markets as they headed into the weekend.

"Shares of UK-listed banks including Barclays, RBS and HSBC responded positively to the US results," Lawler said.

Equities had retreated Thursday on investor disappointment over a lack of policy detail from United States President-elect Donald Trump and allegations of emissions cheating at Fiat Chrysler.

"Trump's first press conference was uninspiring, leaving intact all the uncertainty surrounding the course of the new administration," said UniCredit analyst Marco Valli.

The FTSE's record-breaking run has been driven by sterling weakness owing to ongoing uncertainty over Brexit.

Next Tuesday, British Prime Minister Theresa May will set out the long-awaited approach the government will take before triggering article 50, starting a two-year process that will take Britain out of the EU.

"If the Prime Minister confirms the UK will leave the single market in a 'Hard Brexit', the British pound could drop below 1.20 against the dollar," LCG's Lawler said.

- Renault skids on 'dieselgate' -

In the eurozone, French investors appeared to take in their stride news that Renault is being investigated for possible emissions cheating as the so-called "dieselgate" scandal that engulfed German giant Volkswagen 18 months ago spread to other auto makers.

While Renault shares ended the day 2.9 percent lower, the overall French market rose by 1.2 percent.

Italian-American group Fiat Chrysler had been targeted by US authorities just the day before, but strenuously denied the accusations and said it was sticking to its earnings targets.

After plunging more than 16 percent on Thursday, Fiat Chrysler shares bounced back on Friday to show a gain of 4.6 percent at the close.

In New York, two major US banks -- JPMorgan Chase and Bank of America -- posted strong earnings last year, pushing up the wider market.

And with expected economic stimulus and tax cuts likely to bring interest rate increases from the Federal Reserve, banks are expected to see continued profitability this year.

- China trade 'obstacles' -

Earlier in Asia, there was muted reaction to end-of-the-year data from China showing the world's number-two economy was still struggling on the trade front.

Hong Kong added 0.5 percent but Shanghai closed down 0.2 percent with little excitement over news that Chinese exports fell more than expected last month, while imports came in largely as expected.

Figures for the whole year showed exports down 7.7 percent and imports dropping 5.5 percent.

"There remain some obstacles facing China's foreign trade development," Customs spokesman Huang Songping told reporters at a news conference announcing the results, adding the international trading environment was "severe and complex".

Copyright AFP (Agence France-Press), 2017

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fawad@br-mail.com (Fawad Maqsood) Europe Fri, 13 Jan 2017 18:54:58 +0000