European stoks positive
On Wednesday European stocks rose and U.S. equity-index futures edged higher as investors awaited the Federal Reserve rate decision. The dollar nudged upward with Treasuries yields, and emerging-market currencies extended a drop.
Technology companies outperformed as the Stoxx Europe 600 Index advanced, though gains were tempered by a decline in telecom shares and trading volumes were below average. The region’s common currency struggled for direction ahead of Thursday’s ECB decision, and as yet more disappointing economic data were released. The pound weakened as Brexit battles rumbled on and inflation held steady. Italian bonds gained amid an auction of new debt.
Earlier in Asia, Japanese shares rose as the yen dipped, while equities fell in Hong Kong and Australia. Chinese shares also retreated, with ZTE Corp. plunging by its daily limit after it agreed to a $1 billion fine.
As far as the markets are concerned the Fed is all but certain to raise rates by a quarter-point at the close of a two-day meeting Wednesday, so the focus will be on the outlook for future policy. An uptick in inflation has reignited some speculation there could be a total of four hikes in 2018.
The Stoxx Europe 600 Index climbed 0.2 percent as of 10:36 a.m. London time, to the highest in more than two weeks. Futures on the S&P 500 Index increased 0.1 percent. The U.K.’s FTSE 100 Index gained 0.1 percent. Germany’s DAX Index advanced 0.1 percent to the highest in more than two weeks. The MSCI Emerging Market Index sank 0.6 percent to the lowest in more than a week. The MSCI Asia Pacific Index sank 0.4 percent to the lowest in more than a week.
West Texas Intermediate crude fell 0.4 percent to $66.11 a barrel, the biggest fall in a week. Gold dipped 0.1 percent to $1,294.31 an ounce, the weakest in more than a week. Brent crude fell 0.6 percent to $75.41 a barrel, the lowest in a week.
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: firstname.lastname@example.org Internet address: www.bovassetmanagement.com. BOV Asset Management is licensed by the MFSA.