European stocks higher as German gloom fuels ECB hopes

Frankfurt rose 0.7 and Paris added 0.6 percent following news that German industrial orders fell in August. (Reuters)
Updated 07 October 2019

European stocks higher as German gloom fuels ECB hopes

  • New contracts in Germany were down 0.6 percent compared with July

LONDON: Europe’s stock markets pushed higher Monday as investors bet that gloomy German economic data would help persuade the European Central Bank to continue its “accommodative” monetary policy, dealers said.
Frankfurt rose 0.7 and Paris added 0.6 percent following news that German industrial orders fell in August.
New contracts in Germany were down 0.6 percent compared with July, federal statistics authority Destatis said, disappointing analysts’ predictions for a 0.6-percent increase.
London stocks climbed 0.6 percent.
The bright performance at the start of the week followed strong gains in Wall Street action on Friday.
“We are in a... scenario where bad news is good news,” ThinkMarkets analyst Naeem Aslam told AFP.
“Any weakness in the economic numbers, which we experienced today, confirms that the European Central Bank is going to remain accommodative and this helps investors to favor riskier assets” such as stocks.
Most markets also rose in Asia after a mixed US jobs report eased worries about a recession in the world’s top economy — and maintained expectations the Federal Reserve will press on with interest rate cuts.
However, there was some nervousness after reports said China had cut back on the number of areas it is willing to discuss at this week’s top-level trade talks with the US, rekindling concerns about the chances of any agreement between the two.
After a string of below-par data last week that highlighted the impact of Donald Trump’s trade war on the key manufacturing and services sectors, Friday’s much-anticipated non-farm payrolls figures showed unemployment at a 50-year low in September.
But the pace of job creation was the slowest in four months, wages fell and the manufacturing workforce also shrank for the second time this year.
Focus turns this week to the resumption of high-level trade talks between China and the United States in Washington.
However, while there has been a broad expectation the two sides are coming together in some areas owing to their economies stuttering, reports said Beijing was looking to narrow the remit of any deal.
Bloomberg News reported that top negotiator Vice Premier Liu He said he would not put on the table reforms to Chinese industrial policy or government subsidies, a key source of anger within the White House.
“Thursday’s US-China trade talks will be in play this week, but already traders are managing their expectations as it seems that China won’t budge on certain issues,” said market analyst David Madden at CMC Markets UK.
Wall Street stocks were mixed in late morning trading, with the Dow slipping less than 0.1 percent.
Oil prices meanwhile rebounded sharply from last week’s heavy losses as bargain hunters moved in.
“The oil market... is trading positive today after suffering from heavy losses last week,” said ThinkMarkets’ Aslam.
“It was the string of dismal economic numbers that sparked the (oil market) sell-off because traders became concerned about global growth.”


Oil retreats in face of renewed coronavirus uncertainty

Updated 22 February 2020

Oil retreats in face of renewed coronavirus uncertainty

  • G20 finance leaders to meet in Saudi Arabia at the weekend to discuss risks to the global economy
  • OPEC+ has been withholding supply to support prices and many analysts expect an extension or deepening of the curbs

LONDON: Oil prices fell on Friday as weak Asian data and a rise in new coronavirus cases fuelled uncertainty about the economic outlook while leading crude producers appeared to be in no rush to curb output.

Brent crude was down $1.56, or 2.6 percent, at $57.75 in afternoon trade, while U.S. crude dropped $1.25, or 2.3 percent, to $52.63.

"With Brent failing to breach the $60 level on Thursday despite better than expected U.S. oil inventory data, rising market uncertainty is dragging down oil prices on Friday," said UBS analyst Giovanni Staunovo.

"Market participants who benefited from the price rise in recent days might prefer not to go into the weekend with a long position."

 

China reports rise in coronavirus cases.

Japan factory activity shrinks at fastest pace since 2012.

Russia says early OPEC+ meeting no longer makes sense.

Finance leaders from the Group of 20 major economies meet in Saudi Arabia at the weekend to discuss risks to the global economy after new Asian economic and health data kept investors on guard.

Beijing reported an uptick in coronavirus cases on Friday and South Korea reported 100 new cases, doubling its infections. In Japan, meanwhile, more than 80 people have tested positive for the virus.

Factory activity in Japan registered its steepest contraction in seven years in February, hurt by fallout from the outbreak. 

"We still believe that the market is likely to trade lower from current levels, given the scale of the surplus over the first half of this year, and the need for the market to send a signal to OPEC+ that they must take further action at their meeting in early March," said ING analyst Warren Patterson.

Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak said on Thursday that global oil producers understood it would no longer make sense for the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and its allies to meet before the planned gathering.

The group, known as OPEC+, has been withholding supply to support prices and many analysts expect an extension or deepening of the curbs.