May 9, 2013 / 5:31 AM / 5 years ago

European Factors to Watch-Shares to pause at multi-year peak

LONDON, May 9 (Reuters) - European stocks are seen opening slightly lower on
Thursday, taking a breather after a steep rise that has taken a key index to
multi-year highs and into "overbought" territory on short-term technical charts.
    At 0618 GMT, futures for the Euro STOXX 50, Britain's FTSE 100
, Germany's DAX and France's CAC were down between 0.1
percent and 0.2 percent.
    The euro zone Euro STOXX 50 index is trading at levels not seen
since mid-2011 after rising nearly 10 percent in less than a month, boosted by
monetary stimulus from the European Central Bank and the U.S. Federal Reserve. 
    The index's Relative Strength Index (RSI) indicated "overbought" conditions,
meaning some technical traders could start taking some profit. 
    Chris Weston, a trader at IG, said European traders would likely look for
any sign of a pullback in the U.S. S&P 500 index, which ended at record
highs for a fifth consecutive day, before starting to sell European shares.
    "We're getting to a point where the market will look to start rolling over,"
Weston said. "Everyone is in a quite optimistic mood at the moment so pullbacks
will be limited to 2 or 3 percent at the moment."
    Volume may be lighter than usual on Thursday, with the Swiss, Austrian and
Nordic markets shut due to national holidays.
    With the European earnings calendar relatively light, traders said European
markets could take their cue from U.S. data due in the afternoon. 
    Initial claims for jobless benefits in the United States, due for
publication at 1230 GMT, were expected to have risen to 335,000 from 324,000 one
week earlier.
    "We'd need to see a number above 350,000 to cause any kind of major
reaction," IG's Weston said.    
                                           LAST   PCT CHG  NET CHG
 S&P 500                               1,632.69    0.41 %     6.73
 NIKKEI                               14,191.48   -0.66 %   -94.21
 MSCI ASIA EX-JP                         563.92    0.01 %     0.03
 EUR/USD                                 1.3159    0.06 %   0.0008
 USD/JPY                                  98.67   -0.32 %  -0.3200
 10-YR US TSY YLD                         1.808        --     0.00
 10-YR BUND YLD                           1.265        --     0.00
 SPOT GOLD                            $1,470.86   -0.09 %   -$1.33
 US CRUDE                                $96.30   -0.33 %    -0.32
  > Asian shares gain as upbeat global data, Wall St buoy mood       
  > US STOCKS-S&P 500 ends at record for 5th day                     
  > Nikkei up on strong markets; Toyota, brokerages lead gains       
  > TREASURIES-U.S. bonds make small gains as yields draw buyers     
  > FOREX-Antipodean currencies centre stage on strong jobs reports  
  > PRECIOUS-Gold steadies after 1 pct gain; ETFs at 4-year low      
  > London copper slips from 3-week top; China demand in focus       
  > Oil ends mixed, Brent/WTI at narrowest in 2-plus years           
    The Spanish oil major posted a forecast-beating 47 percent rise in
first-quarter adjusted net profit, driven by higher production and a surge in
refining margins.
    The financial firm said funds under management rose 7 percent to 288.4
billion pounds in the first quarter. 
    Deutsche Bank had the biggest share of the foreign exchange market for the
ninth year running but second-ranked Citi significantly narrowed the gap, a
Euromoney poll showed on Wednesday. 
    Allianz SE said on Wednesday it would redeem all of its $2 billion 8.375
percent undated subordinated callable bonds. 
    France's Credit Agricole and Italy's Banco Popolare have
agreed to inject 450 million euros ($593 million) into their consumer credit
joint venture Agos Ducato, which is struggling under a mountain of bad debt in
crisis-hit Italy. 
    MBIA Inc agreed to pay the French bank $350 million to settle
litigation over the bond insurer's restructuring, a person familiar with the
case told Reuters on Wednesday. 
   MBIA confirmed the settlement in a regulatory filing Wednesday, which said
the agreement brings to an end all litigation brought against it by 18 financial

   Airbus has started painting the A350, a sign it is approaching a maiden
flight, but has bowed to the industry's increasingly pragmatic mood by deciding
against a traditional "rollout" for its newest jet. 
    Australia's military has reached agreement with Eurocopter's local
subsidiary to fix problems with its MRH-90 transport helicopter that should see
the troubled aircraft cleared later this year, the government said on Thursday.
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