Eurozone stimulus hopes push equities higher

GMT 13:47 2014 Tuesday ,25 November

Arab Today, arab today Eurozone stimulus hopes push equities higher

London's benchmark FTSE
London - AFP

Lingering eurozone stimulus hopes lifted European stock markets on Tuesday, with sentiment buoyed also by upbeat German data and bumper gains elsewhere, dealers said.
In late morning deals, London's benchmark FTSE 100 index rose 0.15 percent to trade at 6,740.22 points and the Paris CAC 40 index gained 0.57 percent to 4,393.16 compared with Monday's closing value.
Frankfurt's DAX 30 jumped 1.02 percent to 9,885.09 points, as official data confirmed that the German economy grew 0.1 percent in the third quarter, narrowly avoiding a recession.
"Speculation that the European Central Bank could announce a QE (quantitative easing) programme in December is supporting equities," said Mike McCudden, head of equities at online broker Interactive Investor.
"Furthermore, merger and acquisition (M&A) speculation across the region is ensuring the main eurozone indices are being propped up," he told AFP.
- Draghi bounce -
ECB chief Mario Draghi last week signalled readiness to act quickly to deter deflation, sparking fresh stimulus hopes.
The comments, combined with China's surprise rate cut, gave markets a shot in the arm on Friday and have continued to boost share prices.
The French market was also lifted by better than expected data on business climate, with the national data institute reporting a three-point rise on the index to 94 although analysts had expected it to come in at 92.
Credit Agricole bank topped the risers board, soaring 3.13 percent to 11.19 euros.
Rival Societe Generale was the next biggest gainer with a 2.50-percent jump to 39.77 euros. And BNP Paribas rallied 1.63 percent to 51.02 euros.
"European equity markets are still riding on the back of Mario Draghi’s remarks that full-blown QE could be on the cards, should be it be called for," added analyst David Madden at trading firm IG.
Asian stock markets traded mixed Tuesday after a Chinese rate cut had fuelled a rally in the previous session, while Tokyo played catch-up following a long holiday weekend.
Tokyo rose 0.29 percent and Seoul was slightly higher, while Sydney shed 0.50 percent and Hong Kong slipped 0.21 percent lower.
However on the upside, Shanghai rallied 1.37 percent to close at 2,567.60 -- the highest since August 2011 -- following a 1.85-percent increase the previous day.
Monday's surge that came on the back of China's surprise decision last week to slash interest rates for the first time in two years, in a bid to kickstart growth in the Asian powerhouse nation.
- Record US close -
Wall Street provided a positive lead Monday ahead of the release of US third-quarter growth figures later Tuesday, as well as data on consumer confidence, home prices and business activity.
The Dow edged up 0.04 percent to its third straight record close and the S&P 500 gained 0.29 percent, also an all-time high. The Nasdaq tacked on 0.89 percent.
"Another record close for US markets ... appears to be keeping the stock markets bandwagon rolling ever upward, on expectations of continued low rates, easy global monetary policies and a more spendthrift consumer," said CMC Markets analyst Michael Hewson.
In London foreign exchange deals on Tuesday, the euro was trading at $1.2436, down from $1.2439 late in New York on Monday.
The European single currency gained to 79.34 British pence from 79.21 Monday. The British pound edged up to $1.5674 from $1.5704.
On the downside in London, shares in Petrofac sank by another 4.05 percent to 842 pence.
Stock in the British energy services group had already collapsed by 26.45 percent on Monday after gloomy profits warning that blamed slumping oil prices.
Home-improvements retailer Kingfisher meanwhile saw its shares slide 3.98 percent to 291.7 pence after posting falling third-quarter profits and sales.


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