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Markets

Frankfurt stocks hit record peak, euro jumps as outlook brightens

  • Frankfurt's DAX 30 index soared to an all-time peak at 15,568.60 points, before trimming gains in early afternoon deals.
25 May 2021

LONDON: German stocks scored a record peak on Tuesday, as Frankfurt dealers returned from a long weekend break to bright data, merger news, easing inflation concerns and Wall Street gains.

Frankfurt's DAX 30 index soared to an all-time peak at 15,568.60 points, before trimming gains in early afternoon deals.

Elsewhere in Europe, Paris gained 0.1 percent and London flatlined, after both markets had already advanced on Monday, while the euro hit a five-month dollar high.

Bitcoin held onto gains after another wild day, thanks to a supportive tweet from tycoon Elon Musk that offset fresh Chinese warnings of a crackdown on cryptocurrencies.

And oil prices dipped after Iran indicated that differences remain with the US and other world powers in talks aimed at reviving their 2015 nuclear agreement.

"The DAX is leading the charge higher in Europe, following on from a strong close on Wall Street," said analyst Sophie Griffiths at trading firm OANDA.

"A combination of M&A (merger and acquisition) activity, upbeat business sentiment data and easing US inflation fears have helped drive the German equities market to a fresh all-time high."

Frankfurt dealers also played catch-up with European gains Monday.

Investors seized on an announcement from Germany's top property group Vonovia of a 19-billion euro merger with rival Deutsche Wohnen to form a sector giant.

Sentiment was also boosted by surging German business confidence.

The Ifo institute's monthly barometer based on a survey of 9,000 companies climbed to 99.2 points in May, 2.6 points up from April and its highest value in two years.

Easing inflation concerns also pushed stocks higher, with Asia tracking a healthy rally on Wall Street, as traders eyed the upbeat global economic outlook.

In New York on Monday, investors took heart from a number of Federal Reserve officials who insisted that an expected spike in prices over the next few months -- caused by issues including supply bottlenecks and just-freed consumers splurging cash -- would be temporary.

The gains helped chip away at recent losses in the tech sector, which has taken the brunt of selling on concerns that surging inflation will force central banks to hike interest rates sooner than expected.

Tech giants are more susceptible to higher rates owing to the potential effect on their future earnings and cash flow.

Bitcoin held around $39,000 -- having almost fallen through $30,000 recently for the first time since January -- after Musk tweeted support for a group attempting to make the mining of the currency less environmentally damaging.

The cryptocurrency had early Monday suffered steep losses after China reiterated its call to curtail mining and trading.

That came days after Beijing said the units would not be allowed in transactions and warned investors against speculative trading in them.

Key figures around 1100 GMT -

London - FTSE 100: FLAT at 7,048.52 points

Paris - CAC 40: UP 0.1 percent at 6,416.92

Frankfurt - DAX 30: UP 0.8 percent at 15,558.81

EURO STOXX 50: UP 0.5 percent at 4,053.96

Tokyo - Nikkei 225: UP 0.7 percent at 28,553.98 (close)

Hong Kong - Hang Seng Index: UP 1.8 percent at 28,910.86 (close)

Shanghai - Composite: UP 2.4 percent at 3,581.34 (close)

New York - Dow: UP 0.5 percent at 34,393.98 (close)

Euro/dollar: UP at $1.2253 from $1.2216 at 2100 GMT on Monday

Pound/dollar: UP at $1.4161 from $1.4157

Euro/pound: UP at 86.52 pence from 86.29 pence

Dollar/yen: DOWN at 108.93 yen from 108.96 yen

Brent North Sea crude: DOWN 0.5 percent at $68.13 per barrel

West Texas Intermediate: DOWN 0.7 percent at $65.60 per barrel

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