Business World

Friday 13 December 2019

Concern over Trump policies as European stocks show little change

A trader works on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in Manhattan
A trader works on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in Manhattan

European stocks closed little changed as investors turned their focus to the inauguration of Donald Trump as US president, and whether he can continue to fuel investor expectations of stronger economic growth boosted by more deficit spending and tax cuts.

By the close in Dublin, the ISEQ overall Index was up 0.5pc, or 32.63 points, to end the trading week at 6,622.97.

The leaders on the Dublin index included packaging giant Smurfit Kappa, which rose 4.8pc to €25.25, while Paddy Power/Betfair increased 0.9pc to €99.90.

On the other side of the board, the laggards included food ingredients company Kerry Group which slipped 0.9pc to €67.12, while speciality baker Aryzta slipped 0.8pc to €42.00.

Wall Street pared gains sharply yesterday after Donald Trump made his inaugural speech as the 45th president of the United States.

Mr Trump's campaign promises of tax and regulatory reforms and higher infrastructure spending had driven Wall Street to new highs in a post-election rally.

However, the Trump trade had been unravelling in recent weeks as investors waited for more clarity on his plans to boost the economy.

"Having listened to Trump's speech, there is a concern about what his trade policies will be," said Jamie Cox, managing partner of Harris Financial Group in Colonial Heights, Richmond, Virginia.

"That's probably the No 1 area where Trump will have to tone down his rhetoric because we do have to work with other nations," said Cox, who was at the inauguration.

The S&P 500 has fallen by a median 2.7pc in the month after each new president has taken the keys to the White House since Herbert Hoover did so in January 1929, according to a Reuters analysis.

The dollar index weakened as Trump spoke.


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