By RTT News,
February 19, 2014, 05:49:00 AM EDT
(RTTNews.com) - The UK market is marginally up on Wednesday, as investors were apprehensive to take positions ahead of a report on U.S. housing starts and also looked forward to the release of the minutes of the Federal Reserve's January 28-29 meeting due to be released later in the global day. Trading was also impacted by corporate news and broker comments.
In economic news, policymakers of the Bank of England unanimously decided to leave the key interest rate at 0.50 percent and quantitative easing at 375 billion pounds, the minutes of the meeting showed.
Meanwhile, data released by the Office for National Statistics showed that U.K. jobless rate unexpectedly rose in December, the first increase in nearly a year.
The Euro Stoxx 50 index of eurozone bluechip stocks is losing 0.21 percent, while the Stoxx Europe 50 index, which includes some major U.K. companies, is falling 0.27 percent.
The FTSE 100 index is currently rising 0.03 percent.
AstraZeneca is losing 2.1 percent and BT Group is falling 1.8 percent.
Sports Direct is adding 4.4 percent after issuing an upbeat trading update.
Fresnillo is gaining 2.8 percent and Randgold Resources is adding 3.1 percent.
Other markets in the region are mostly lower.
The Asian stocks turned in a mixed performance, with Chinese shares rallying while Japanese shares succumbed to profit taking after the previous session's sharp rally.
In the U.S., futures point to a cautious open on Wall Street. In the previous session, stocks ended mixed, as investors digested soft data on the housing and factory sectors and news of a big merger in the pharmaceutical sector. The tech-heavy Nasdaq advanced 0.7 percent and the S&P 500 edged up 0.1 percent, while the Dow shed 0.2 percent.
Crude for March delivery is adding $0.01 to $102.11 per barrel, while gold is losing $3.5 to $1320.9 a troy ounce.
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