By RTT News, March 20, 2013, 07:19:00 AM EDT
(RTTNews.com) - The French market is moderately higher on Wednesday, after Cyprus' Parliament on Tuesday rejected a proposed levy on bank deposits in return for a 10 billion euros European bailout, putting the rescue deal in shambles. Lawmakers voted 36-0 to reject the bill, while the ruling party abstained.
Eurogroup Chairman Jeroen Dijsselbloem, who is also the Dutch Finance Minister, said the EU stands ready to help Cyprus, provided it adheres to the bailout conditions.
The European Central Bank, in a brief statement on Tuesday, said it would provide liquidity for Cypriot banks, "as needed within the existing rules."
Bank of England Governor Mervyn King and two other policymakers voted to increase the quantitative easing, while other six members said further stimulus will raise inflationary risk, the minutes of the meeting held on March 6 and 7 showed Wednesday.
As seen in February, King, Paul Fisher and David Miles sought an increase in asset purchases by 25 billion pounds to a total 400 billion pounds. Meanwhile, all other members voted to retain the asset purchase programme at 375 billion pounds.
U.K. Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne will deliver his annual budget to Parliament today. Osborne is expected to stand by his deficit reduction plans, dismissing calls for tax cuts and increased spending.
The number of people claiming job seekers' allowance in the U.K. declined in February, but to a lesser extent than expected, data released by the Office for National Statistics showed. Total unemployment rose for the first time in a year in the three months through January as more young people remained out of work.
The Euro Stoxx 50 index of eurozone bluechip stocks is adding 0.71 percent, while the Stoxx Europe 50 index, which includes some major U.K. companies, is gaining 0.38 percent.
The CAC 40 index is currently adding 0.6 percent.
Essilor International is gaining 1.7 percent and Sanofi is adding 1.5 percent.
Credit Agricole and BNP Paribas are advancing 1.5 percent and 1.1 percent, respectively. Societe Generale is adding 0.6 percent.
Elsewhere in Europe, the German DAX, the UK's FTSE 100 and Switzerland's SMI are advancing moderately.
Across Asia/Pacific, Australia's All Ordinaries slid 0.4 percent, while China's Shanghai Composite added 2.7 percent and Hong Kong's Hang Seng rose around 1 percent.
In the U.S., futures point to a higher open on Wall Street. In the previous session, stocks wavered over the course of the trading day, as traders weighed concerns about the situation in Cyprus against upbeat U.S. housing data. While the Dow managed to end the day up less than a tenth of a percent, the Nasdaq dipped 0.3 percent and the S&P 500 edged down 0.2 percent.
In the commodity space, crude for May delivery is advancing $0.37 to $92.89 per barrel while April gold is losing $1.4 to $1609.9 a troy ounce.
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