Investing.com - European stocks turned broadly lower on
Wednesday, as investors remained cautious although sentiment
remained supported after the International Monetary Fund on Tuesday
raised its forecast for global economic growth.
During European afternoon trade, the EURO STOXX 50 fell 0.22%,
France's CAC 40 shed 0.22%, while Germany's DAX 30 slipped
On Tuesday, the IMF raised its forecast for global economic
growth, but also warned that the pace of the recovery will remain
"weak and uneven"
The IMF said it expects the global economy to grow by 3.7% in
2014, which in October it said would expand by 3.6% this year.
Investors still remained cautious amid expectations for a
reduction to the Federal Reserve's quantitative easing program at
the outcome of its next policy meeting on January 29 to USD65
billion from the current USD75 billion.
Financial stocks were erased earlier gains, as French lenders
BNP Paribas and Societe Generale slipped 0.10% and 0.36%, while
Germany's Deutsche Bank retreated 0.72%.
Among peripheral lenders, Spanish banks Banco Santander and BBVA
lost 1.04% and 1.42% respectively, while Italy's Unicredit tumbled
Elsewhere, ASML Holding surged 7.04% after forecasting
first-quarter sales that trailed analysts' estimates.
Adding to gains, Rautaruukki Oyj saw shares skyrocket 28.81%
after SSAB, Austria's third biggest lender, said it plans to buy
the Finnish steelmaker.
In London, FTSE 100 fell 0.10%, as U.K. lenders tracked their
European counterparts lower and after data showed that the U.K.
unemployment rate fell to 7.1% in November, raising questions over
the Bank of England's forward guidance on rates.
In addition, the minutes of the BoE's January meeting said the
unemployment rate will hit the 7% threshold "materially earlier"
than forecast, but reiterated that policymakers saw no immediate
need to raise rates even if the threshold is reached in the near
Shares in Lloyds Banking and HSBC Holdings declined 0.35% and
0.57%, while Barclays tumbled 1.04% and the Royal Bank of Scotland
Meanwhile, mining stocks held earlier gains, as Glencore Xstrata
climbed 0.55%, while Randgold Resources and Vedanta Resources
rallied 1.79% and 1.80% respectively.
BHP Billiton underperformed however, down 1.15%, after saying
that iron-ore output rose to 48.9 million metric tons in the second
quarter, from 42.2 million tons a year earlier, still missing the
49.3 million-ton analysts' estimate.
In the U.S., equity markets pointed to a lower open. The Dow
Jones Industrial Average futures pointed to a 0.29% fall, S&P
500 futures signaled a 0.16% loss, while the Nasdaq 100 futures
indicated a 0.09% downtick.
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