Paris (awp/afp) – Caution was needed on European markets on Thursday, in an economic context lacking visibility. Asian markets, however, continued their momentum, boosted by the prospect of a recovery in China.
The Hong Kong stock exchange (+1.25% around 9:40) and that of Shanghai (+1% at the close) maintained the very positive trend that began at the end of 2022, hoping that with Beijing abandoning the radical “zero Covid” strategy that was undermining activity, the world’s second-largest economy could recover shortly. The Tokyo Stock Exchange recovered 0.4%.
However, despite the lifting of health restrictions in December, services activity in China contracted again for the fourth consecutive month, according to the Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI). In the wake of Beijing’s promises of new fiscal measures to support the national economy, China’s central bank promised on Wednesday to pursue a pro-growth policy.
According to the press, China is considering partially lifting the ban on the import of Australian coal, a sign of a thaw in relations between Australia and Beijing. In Europe, positive momentum was weakening slightly as risk appetite had re-emerged since the start of the week after an unfortunate 2022.
The indices fell by 0.47% in Paris, by 0.24% in Frankfurt, by 0.13% in Milan. London remained in positive territory (+0.23%), helped by the mining sector, at around 9:30am. As for the Swiss stocks, just before 10.15am its leading SMI index returned 0.57%.
Detailed trading minutes (the “minutes”) of the US Federal Reserve’s latest monetary meeting in December, released on Wednesday, confirmed that the Fed does not expect to cut its key rates in 2023. But the voluntary slowdown in activity through the Fed’s key rate hike to curb inflation could push the US economy into a recession.
Investors will have “much more clarity by the end of the first quarter on many fronts, whether it’s the path of inflation, terminal rates or the ability of economies to continue to weather these pressures,” according to Oanda analyst Craig Erlam. . The monthly private sector job creation report for December (ADP survey) and weekly jobless claims in the US are expected this Thursday.
Next he puts his 31
The British apparel giant raised its full-year earnings forecast on Thursday after better-than-expected sales during the holiday season, and was up more than 6% on Thursday at the end of the year.
Mining in the Chinese firmament
Mining stocks were supported by positive signals from China: ArcelorMittal gained 0.88%, Antofagasta +1.77%, Fresnillo +0.87%, BHP Group +1.18%, Rio Tinto +0.91% .
Changeable weather on the road
Japanese automakers, in particular, benefited to some extent from renewed yen weakness: Toyota gained 0.47% to 1,807.5 yen, Honda 0.72% to 3,064 yen and Nissan 1.69 % to 419.4 yen. The French Stellantis (-0.20%) announced at the large electronics fair CES in Las Vegas that it would produce electric planes developed by the American company Archer and destined to become flying taxis.
Germany’s BMW (+0.11% around 08:40 GMT) presented a prototype car that can change color in Las Vegas.
On the side of currencies and oil
The dollar appreciated slightly against the yen to 132.86 yen around 8:20 GMT versus 132.63 yen the day before at 21:00 GMT.
The euro stabilized against the dollar at 1.0609 dollars.
In the oil market, whose prices fell further on Wednesday, a barrel of US WTI recovered 0.91% to $73.51 around 08:20 GMT and a barrel of North Sea Brent recovered 0.72% at $78.37.
Europe’s benchmark natural gas contract, the Dutch TTF, has traded at its lowest since late November 2021, erasing gains recorded in 2022 in the wake of the war in Ukraine. After falling to €63 per megawatt-hour earlier, it was worth €64.40 at around 08:40 GMT.