LONDON, April 1 European stocks were expected to make a positive
start to the second quarter of the year on Tuesday as expectations of continued
economic stimulus from U.S. and Chinese authorities helped key indexes recoup a
late selloff on the previous day.
At 0631 GMT, futures for the Euro STOXX 50, Britain's FTSE 100
, Germany's DAX and France's CAC were up between 0.2
percent and 0.5 percent.
Persistent weakness in China's manufacturing sector was seen boosting the
chances of increased government spending to spur growth. Investors were also
reassured by dovish comments by U.S. Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen, who
said an easy monetary policy would need to remain in place for some time.
European indexes were likely to trade in a narrow range ahead of the
publication of manufacturing surveys for some key European countries and the
euro zone, due out between 0745 GMT and 0830 GMT. U.S manufacturing data is due
at 1400 GMT, with all important non-farm payrolls figures due on Friday.
"Despite signs suggesting that central banks are going to be firmly
committed to easy monetary policy... traders are still likely to tread
cautiously ahead of upcoming data releases," Jonathan Sudaria, a dealer at
Capital Spreads, said in a trading note.
The euro zone Euro STOXX 50 index hit its highest level since
2008 at 3,185.68 points before succumbing to some quarter-end profit taking to
end 0.3 percent lower at 3,161.60 points.
Nicolas Suiffet, a technical analyst at Trading Central, said the trend was
still up for the index and momentum, as measured by the index's 14-day Relative
Strength Index, remained strong.
"From a chartist point of view, the failure breakout top of the short term
trading range at 3,177 yesterday calls for caution," Suiffet said. "However,
prices are supported by an internal trend line drawn from August 2013 currently
Europe bourses in 2014: link.reuters.com/pad95v
Asset performance in 2014: link.reuters.com/rav46v
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METSO WEIR GROUP
Engineering company Weir Group is said to be in talks to buy its
Finnish rival Metso for more than 4 billion euros ($5.5 billion) to expand its
industrial pumps and valves offering, the Times reported on
French turbine and train maker said on Tuesday it is selling its heat
exchange unit for 730 million euros ($1.01 billion) to German private equity
group Triton, as part of its 2 billion euro asset disposal programme.
Shares in Veolia Environnement closed 1.24 percent lower on Monday after its
second-biggest shareholder, Groupe Industriel Marcel Dassault, said late on
Friday it had resigned from the board.
The public commissioner of France's highest administrative court advised it
to overturn a government decision to limit a rise in regulated power tariffs to
two percent in July 2012, which would mean consumers could face a backdated
Italy's Snam and Belgium's Fluxys have agreed to extend a joint venture to
pool gas assets in Europe that could help create a more unified gas market
across the continent and make it easier to trade gas.
Pacific Investment Management Co. has been removed as the subadvisor of two
bond funds totaling $3.7 billion offered by ING U.S. Investment Management,
according to a regulatory filing with the SEC
Germany plans to exempt existing power plants operated by firms making their
own electricity from a surcharge to support renewable energy, a draft law seen
by Reuters showed on Monday.
Deutsche Bank, the world's largest currency trader, has placed on leave a
director of institutional foreign exchange sales as part of an internal
investigation into potential exchange rate manipulation, a source familiar with
the matter said on Monday.
VW, DAIMLER, BMW
German car makers are increasingly dependant on China for growth, a study
showed on Monday. Last year Volkswagen AG, BMW and Daimler
AG together sold about 28 percent of their cars and light commercial
vehicles in China, up from 12 percent in 2008, according to a study by
Software AG said it had agreed to sell its SAP consulting business in
Germany, Austria and Switzerland to its strategic partner, Scheer Group GmbH,
but did not disclose financial terms for the deal.
(Reporting By Francesco Canepa, Editing by Alistair Smout)