Friday 23 February 2018 12.30
European stocks struggle despite strong Asian session
On Friday stocks in Europe struggled for traction despite a positive Asia session as investors continue to debate the outlook for global central bank policies. Bonds in the euro region’s core gained with Treasuries, while the dollar steadied after Thursday’s drop.
The Stoxx Europe 600 Index edged lower as declines in car and auto-parts makers helped offset gains for telecom companies. U.S. equity-index futures climbed. The MSCI Asia Pacific Index rose, underpinned by gains in Tokyo, Hong Kong, Sydney and Seoul. Yields on Treasury 10-year notes fell, though they remain near their highest since 2014. Those on German bunds dropped to the lowest since January. The common currency slipped.
Bond investors took heart from an account of the European Central Bank’s most recent meeting, which showed policy makers aren’t yet ready to remove a pledge to expand its asset-buying program if needed.
Elsewhere, the pound edged lower after U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May won the backing of her divided cabinet for a trade deal with the European Union. Crude oil retreated, but remained on track for a second weekly increase as a surprise pullback in U.S. inventories compounded signs that a global glut is easing.
The Stoxx Europe 600 Index declined 0.1 percent as of 11:23 a.m. London time. The U.K.’s FTSE 100 Index decreased 0.3 percent. Germany’s DAX Index dipped 0.1 percent. Futures on the S&P 500 Index advanced 0.2 percent. The MSCI Asia Pacific Index advanced 0.9 percent. Japan’s Topix index rose 0.8 percent, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index climbed 1 percent, and South Korea’s Kospi was up 1.5 percent. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 Index gained 0.8 percent.
West Texas Intermediate crude declined 0.6 percent to $62.42 a barrel, the largest drop in two weeks. Gold dipped 0.2 percent to $1,329.36 an ounce.This article was compiled by BOV Asset Management Limited, a member of the BOV Group. BOV Asset Management, TG Complex, Suite 2, Level 3, Brewery Str., Mriehel BKR 3000. Email: email@example.com Internet address: www.bovassetmanagement.com. BOV Asset Management is licensed by the MFSA.