Friday 20 September 2019

European stocks decline, euro rises

Traders work on the floor at the New York Stock Exchange
Traders work on the floor at the New York Stock Exchange

Bloomberg

European stocks fell alongside US equity futures yesterday in a subdued day of trading thanks to the American Thanksgiving holiday.

Sterling jumped and the euro strengthened after a breakthrough between the UK and EU over the Brexit deal.

The Stoxx Europe 600 Index gave up a chunk of Wednesday's advance as almost every sector fell, though the intraday trading volume was below the 30-day average and the gauge came off its lows. It was 0.57pc lower near the end of trading.

Asian equity benchmarks swung between gains and losses before turning higher, with Japanese stocks getting an end-of-session boost on a report about a possible government rebate. Trading volumes in the region were also depressed.

Gilts fell as a draft Brexit deal pointing to deep ties between the UK and European Union as well as a solution to the border question was agreed at a "political level," according to the EU. The region's sovereign debt mainly edged higher.

Investor sentiment remains fragile following the volatility that's rocked markets since October, wiping out many equity gains for the year.

The ISEQ Overall Index was 0.5pc lower near the close, at 5,862. Cairn Homes advanced almost 5pc to €1.40, while Ryanair had added 3.1pc near the end of the session, to €12.29. Decliners included Smurfit Kappa, which was 5.1pc lower near the close, at €24.14. Insurance firm FBD was down 3.6pc at €9.54.

The UK's FTSE-100 was 1.2pc lower, while Germany's DAX was down 0.9pc. France's CAC-40 had retreated 0.6pc.

Irish Independent

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