CLOSING APR 15
In European Equity Markets the pan-European Stoxx 600 index closed up 0.1%, with most sectors and major bourses in positive territory. Nokia fell almost 4% following a downgrade from Goldman Sachs. Analysts at the bank said the Finnish telecommunications firm was faces downside risks amid increasing competition from Ericsson and Samsung. French advertising group Publicis’ shares rose 1.5% after news of a $4.4 billion takeover of marketing and data company Epsilon. The firm also released first-quarter results, reporting a rise in revenue and confirming its outlook for 2019.
In Currency Markets the U.S. dollar was modestly weaker against the euro on Monday as investors focused on European manufacturing data due on Thursday for signs that growth in the region is improving. Although the dollar tends to under-perform when risk appetite grows, data on Friday showed speculators bolstered their net long dollar position in the latest week. It’s now at its highest level since December 2015, while traders remain short the euro. The British pound climbed above $1.31 on Monday, although trading was quiet without any significant Brexit-related developments.
In Commodities Markets oil prices halted their rally on Monday with Brent futures falling below $71 per barrel on signals that Russia may exit production cuts. Losses were limited by a tightening of global supplies, as output has fallen in Iran and Venezuela amid signs the United States will further toughen sanctions on those two OPEC producers. Brent crude futures were at $71.15 a barrel, down 40 cents, or 0.60 percent, having earlier slid below $71 per barrel. U.S. WTI crude futures were at $63.49 per barrel, down 40 cents or 0.66 percent.
In US Equity Markets main indexes fell on Monday, pulling back from a rally in the prior session that took the S&P 500 within striking distance of its September record close, as lackluster results from Goldman Sachs and Citigroup pressured financial stocks. Goldman Sachs Group Inc fell 3.2% and Citigroup Inc dipped 0.9% after both Wall Street banks missed revenue estimates. The financial sector fell 0.47%, its first decline in four sessions. The S&P 500 was down 0.28%, at 2,899.30 and the Nasdaq Composite fell 0.49%, at 7,944.65.
In Bond Markets Greek government bond yields were closing in on record lows on Monday after an official said a deal to repay International Monetary Fund loans is imminent, which would mark another step forward from the Athens debt crisis. Greece’s benchmark 10-year government bond yield slipped three basis points to 3.27 percent, its lowest since September, 2005 and approaching the record low of 3.203 percent. Five-year yields also reached a 13-year low of 2.15 percent.
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