European stocks mainly rise with focus on Greece

GMT 16:15 2015 Thursday ,19 February

Arab Today, arab today European stocks mainly rise with focus on Greece

European stocks
London - AFP

European stock markets were mixed Thursday amid ongoing concerns over the Greek debt drama and falling oil prices, dealers said.
Frankfurt's benchmark DAX 30 index of leading companies gained just 0.21 percent to 10,974.43 points in afternoon trading, and the CAC 40 index in Paris inched up 0.54 percent to 4,824.44 points.
Madrid equities added 0.72 percent and Milan was up 0.44 percent in value.
On the downside, London's FTSE 100 index fell 0.10 percent to 6,891.02 points in late trades on profit-taking, having soared the previous day close to a record high.
"The Greek saga continues to hang over the markets," said IG analyst David Madden.
Wall Street also opened down on nagging concerns over the Greek debt tussle and falling oil prices. The Dow Jones Industrial Average declined 0.47 percent in early trading to 17,845.95 points, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index shed 0.01 percent to 4,905.80 points.
The broad-based S&P 500 lost 0.35 percent to 2,092.27 points.
Like its New York cousin, the London market also fretted about the drop in oil prices, as well as poor earnings news from loss-making domestic energy supplier Centrica.
"The FTSE is lagging a bit behind their European peers because oil is down today," said analyst Markus Huber at brokerage Peregrine & Black.
"Overall, Greece is still determining market action today.
"Even though a compromise still has not been agreed on, it is already being considered positive that the Greek government finally tabled an official request for a loan extension which will be discussed at a Eurogroup meeting tomorrow.
"Of course much will depend on what the Greeks are willing to do in exchange."
Eurogroup head Jeroen Dijsselbloem confirmed that the Greek government had sent a request for a six-month extension to their EU loan programme, which will be discussed Friday at  a meeting of eurozone finance ministers in Brussels.
And a spokesman for European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said it was "a positive sign which could pave the way for a reasonable compromise in the interest of financial stability in the euro area as a whole,"
But key powerhouse Germany quickly shot it down, slamming the Greek request as "not a substantial proposal for a solution".
- Energy stocks plunge -
In foreign exchange activity on Thursday, the euro eased to $1.1373, from $1.1398 late in New York.
Back in London, Britain's biggest domestic energy provider Centrica topped the fallers board after revealing that it slumped into a net loss last year.
Centrica shares tanked 8.29 percent to 257.80 pence after revealing it faced a net loss of £1.01 billion ($156 billion, 1.37 billion euros) in 2014, partly due to collapsing gas and oil prices.
“2014 was a very difficult year for Centrica and the recent fall in oil and gas prices creates further challenge,” said new chief executive Iain Conn.
“We are cutting investment and costs in response,” he added.
Sliding world oil prices meanwhile weighed on the European energy sector.
BP shares sank 2.04 percent to 442.10 pence in London, while French oil and gas major Total saw its share price slide 3.49 percentg to 45.635 euros.
Crude oil prices sank Thursday ahead of the release of a closely-watched report that is widely expected to show a surge in US stockpiles to a 33-year high, adding to a global supply glut.


Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today
arabtoday arabtoday arabtoday
بناية النخيل - رأس النبع _ خلف السفارة الفرنسية _بيروت - لبنان
arabs, Arab, Arab