Forexpros – European stocks remained mixed on Thursday, after the European Central Bank lowered its benchmark interest rate in order support euro zone economies, while comments by the Greek finance minister sparked fresh concerns over the country’s financial troubles.
During European afternoon trade, the EURO STOXX 50 eased 0.02%, France’s CAC 40 edged down 0.16%, while Germany’s DAX 30 rose 0.22%.
In a widely expected move, the ECB lowered interest rates to a record low of 0.75% from 1.00% to help bolster growth in the region, following a recent string of weak economic data.
In Greece, new Finance Minister Yannis Stournaras said the Greek austerity program is off track in some respects, adding that international lenders have told him that he will meet some difficulties at a meeting of European finance ministers next Monday.
Stocks had found some support earlier, after China’s central bank cut interest rates for the second time in two months in the latest attempt to bolster slowing growth in the world’s second-largest economy.
Financial stocks erased earlier losses, as shares in French lenders Societe Generale and BNP Paribas surged 3.34% and 1.64%, while Germany’s Deutsche Bank and Commerzbank advanced 1.61% and 1.96% respectively.
Elsewhere, Volkswagen remained one of the session’s top gainers, with shares soaring 7.02%, after agreeing to buy the controlling stake in Porsche’s automotive business for EUR4.46 billion, ending a seven-year takeover saga that divided two of Germany’s most powerful families.
Other European car makers tracked the company’s gains, as shares in Daimler advanced 1.38% and BMW jumped 1.29%, while Peugeot jumped 1.45%.
In London, FTSE 100 rose 0.23%, after the Bank of England the Bank of England increased its quantitative easing program by GBP50 billion and left interest rates unchanged.
GKN continued to lead gains, with shares skyrocketing 10.66%, after the engineering company announced that it had acquired Volvo Aero, the aero engine division of AB Volvo, for GBP633 million.
Mining giant Xstrata also contributed to gains, with shares climbing 3.92%, after it postponed a shareholder vote on its proposed merger with Glencore as it was forced to change the terms of a bumper retention package for top executives.
Meanwhile, energy stocks turned higher. Oil and gas major Anglo American jumped 2.39%, while BP saw shares rise 1.59%.
Financial stocks were broadly lower, on the other hand. Shares in the Royal Bank of Scotland plummeted 1.79% and Lloyds Banking dropped 0.98%, while Barclays and HSBC Holdings eased 0.07% and 0.03% respectively.
In the U.S., equity markets pointed to a moderately lower open. The Dow Jones Industrial Average futures pointed to a 0.07% fall, S&P 500 futures signaled a 0.10% decline, while the Nasdaq 100 futures indicated a 0.18% loss.
Also Thursday, Spain sold EUR2.997 billion of government bonds, in line with the full targeted amount of EUR3 billion, but at higher yields from last month. The yield on Spanish 10-year bonds rose to 6.53% following the auction, re-approaching the critical 7%-level deemed as unsustainable in the long-term.
Later in the day, ECB head Mario Draghi was to outline the reasons for the monetary policy decision and discuss the economic outlook for the euro area, at a press conference.
The U.S. was to publish a report by payroll processing firm ADP on non-farm employment change, followed by government data on unemployment claims. The Institute of Supply Management was also to release a report on U.S. service sector activity.
You can find more and more rubber news at:
Rubber Markets News, Rubber Prices Reports, Rubber Market Analytics & Outlook Reports