European Stocks Slip as Investors Take a Cautious Stance – European stock markets saw modest declines on Monday, marking the beginning of the penultimate week of the year with investors opting for a cautious approach to lock in recent gains ahead of crucial inflation data.

As of 03:35 ET (08:35 GMT), Germany’s DAX index traded 0.4% lower, France’s CAC 40 slipped 0.5%, while the U.K.’s FTSE 100 rose 0.2%.

Key Focus on Inflation Data

European equities enjoyed their fifth consecutive winning week in the previous week. However, the new week started on a subdued note as investors looked to secure profits with the approach of Christmas.

Last week, both the European Central Bank and the Bank of England maintained unchanged interest rates, emphasizing their commitment to combating inflation into the coming year.

This week, attention is on the upcoming U.K. inflation release scheduled for Wednesday, expected to reveal consumer prices remaining well above the Bank of England’s 2% target.

Notable speakers for the day include ECB members Philip Lane and Isabel Schnabel, along with Bank of England Deputy Governor Ben Broadbent.

In contrast, the U.S. is anticipating the release of the personal consumption expenditures price index, the Federal Reserve’s preferred measure of inflation, on Friday, likely indicating easing consumer price pressures. The Fed signaled last week the conclusion of its interest rate hike campaign, paving the way for potential cuts in the upcoming year.

German Ifo Survey Takes Center Stage

The key economic release in Europe on Monday is the German Ifo survey for December, offering insights into the performance of businesses in the largest eurozone economy as the year concludes. Germany’s economy contracted slightly in the third quarter, and recent business activity data suggests a subdued final quarter.

Corporate-wise, Unilever stock dipped 0.6% as the consumer goods giant announced the sale of Elida Beauty, its non-core beauty and personal care division, to private equity firm Yellow Wood Partners. The deal, with undisclosed financial terms, is expected to conclude in mid-2024.

Crude Prices Gain Momentum

Oil prices saw strong gains on Monday, driven by reduced exports from Russia and rising concerns about potential oil supply disruptions through the Red Sea.

As of 03:35 ET, U.S. crude futures traded 0.8% higher at $72.33 a barrel, while the Brent contract climbed 0.8% to $77.13 a barrel. Russia’s decision to deepen oil export cuts in December by around 50,000 barrels per day contributed to the upward momentum. Additionally, apprehensions grew over global supply disruptions as shipping firms announced plans to avoid the Suez Canal due to increased assaults on commercial vessels in the Red Sea by Houthi militants in Yemen.

Moreover, gold futures rose 0.1% to $2,034.45/oz, and EUR/USD traded 0.2% higher at 1.0918.

Bình luận