European Markets Finished With Mixed Results
(RTTNews.com) - The European markets finished Tuesday's session with mixed results. The markets had been largely negative in early trade, due to the weak performance of the U.S. markets yesterday and the weakness of the Asian markets. Fed stimulus concerns also resurfaced, following statements made by Dennis Lockhart. The European markets recovered some ground in late trade Tuesday, with support from the positive early action in the U.S. markets.
Atlanta Federal Reserve President Dennis Lockhart said Monday that he supports "similar tapering steps" as the one taken to reduce bond-market purchases by $10 billion by the Federal Reserve last month, so long as the economic outlook remains positive.
European Central Bank Governing Council member Ewald Nowotny said economic growth in the euro area is likely to exceed expectations this year. The ECB expects the 18-nation currency bloc to grow 1.1 percent this year.
"There is even potential on the upside," Nowotny said. The stronger economies like Germany and Austria might register 2 percent growth, he said at a Euromoney conference in Vienna.
The Euro Stoxx 50 index of eurozone bluechip stocks increased by 0.16 percent, while the Stoxx Europe 50 index, which includes some major U.K. companies, added 0.15 percent.
The DAX of Germany climbed by 0.32 percent and the CAC 40 of France advanced by 0.26 percent. The FTSE 100 of the U.K. gained 0.14 percent, but the SMI of Switzerland fell by 0.34 percent.
In Frankfurt, Infineon Technologies declined by 1.40 percent. Goldman Sachs downgraded the stock to ''Neutral'' from ''Buy.''
UBS downgraded Volkswagen to ''Sell'' from ''Neutral.'' The stock dropped by 2.37 percent.
Fraport dipped by 0.80 percent. The stock was downgraded to ''Equalweight'' from ''Overweight'' at Barclays.
Hugo Boss fell by 1.42 percent, after Nomura downgraded its rating on the stock.
U.S. drug distributor McKesson Corp. said it was unsuccessful in reaching the 75 percent completion condition in its voluntary public tender offer for the outstanding shares of German drug distributor Celesio. Shares of Celesio sank by 4.41 percent.
In Paris, Michelin finished up by 0.46 percent. Goldman Sachs upgraded its rating on the stock to ''Neutral'' from ''Sell.'' Meanwhile, JPMorgan downgraded the stock to ''Underweight'' from ''Neutral.''
In London, Ashmore Group sank by 12.23 percent, after assets under management fell sequentially in the second quarter.
Asos dropped by 5.06 percent, after it reported four month sales data.
Carr's Milling, which issued a trading statement, fell by 3.90 percent.
Mecom Group surged by 27.78 percent. The company expects full year results ahead of previous expectations.
Moss Bros Group soared by 15.82 percent. The company's like for like sales for the 24 weeks to January 11 were up 7.3 percent.
Hargreaves Lansdown and BskyB gained 1.55 percent and 3.75 percent, following positive broker recommendations.
Volga Gas said annual revenues climbed 21 percent. The stock gained 7.62 percent.
Credit Suisse downgraded ASML to ''Neutral'' from ''Outperform.'' The stock rose by 0.18 percent in Amsterdam.
Jeronimo Martins SGPS, which reported sales data for 2013, declined by 2.75 percent in Lisbon.
Industrial production in the euro area staged a better-than-expected recovery in November, rising at the fastest pace in more than three years, and eased concerns over the sluggish pace of the recovery as well as boosted the outlook for the 18-nation economy.
Data published by the Eurostat on Tuesday showed that industrial output in the currency bloc advanced a seasonally adjusted 1.8 percent in November from a month earlier, after falling for two months in a row. The increase was the biggest since May 2010, when production grew 2 percent.
In October, production had recorded a 0.8 percent fall, which was revised up from 1.1 percent. Economists were looking a 1.4 percent growth for November.
Germany's wholesale prices declined for the fifth consecutive month in December, Destatis reported Tuesday. Wholesale prices fell 1.8 percent annually, but slower than the 2.2 percent drop posted in November and 2.7 percent decrease seen in October.
France's EU harmonized inflation held steady in December, contrary to economists' forecast for an increase, data showed Tuesday. Inflation as per the harmonized index of consumer prices (HICP) stayed unchanged at 0.8 percent in December, statistical office Insee said. Economists had forecast inflation to rise to 0.9 percent.
France's current account deficit shrunk slightly in November from the previous month, the Bank of France said on Tuesday. The current account deficit narrowed to EUR 1.9 billion from EUR 2 billion in October. The trade deficit improved to EUR 4.8 billion from EUR 5.1 billion.
The Spanish economy expanded at a faster pace in the fourth quarter of 2013, boosting expectations that the region will create more jobs, Finance Minister Luis de Guindos said. But he cautioned that the recovery is fragile.
Gross domestic product rose 0.3 percent during three months to December, De Guindos told parliament on Monday. The economy emerged out of recession in the third quarter with GDP rising 0.1 percent.
U.K. inflation hit the Bank of England's 2 percent target for the first time in more than four years in December, suggesting that prices were not bloated by robust economic recovery, official data showed Tuesday. Consumer prices rose 2 percent year-on-year, the slowest since November 2009, the Office for National Statistics said. The rate was forecast to remain stable at 2.1 percent.
Residential property prices in the U.K. increased at a weaker annual rate in November, contrary to economists' forecast for a faster growth, latest data showed Tuesday. The house price index rose 5.4 percent in November from the same month of last year, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) said. This followed a 5.5 percent gain in October. Economists had forecast a faster growth of 5.9 percent for November.
Retail sales in the U.S. rose by slightly more than expected in the month of December, according to a report released by the Commerce Department on Tuesday, although the report also showed a notable downward revision to the sales growth seen in November.
The report said retail sales edged up by 0.2 percent in December compared to economist estimates for a 0.1 percent increase. At the same time, the Commerce Department said the retail sales growth in November was downwardly revised to 0.4 percent from the 0.7 percent originally reported.
After reporting notable decreases in U.S. import prices in each of the two previous months, the Labor Department released a report on Tuesday showing that import prices unexpectedly came in unchanged in December.
The Labor Department said import prices recorded no change in December following decreases of 0.9 percent in November and 0.6 percent in October. Economists had been expecting import prices to increase by about 0.4 percent.
The report also said export prices rose by 0.4 percent in December after edging up by 0.1 percent in November. Export prices had been expected to inch up by another 0.1 percent.
Business inventories in the U.S. rose by slightly more than expected in the month of November, according to a report released by the Commerce Department on Tuesday. The report said business inventories increased by 0.4 percent in November after rising by 0.8 percent in October. Economists had expected inventories to increase by 0.3 percent.
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