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Susan Mathew

Banks sizzle as European stocks log fourth week of gains

Sep 13 2019

A surge in banks, miners and automakers galvanized European stocks on Friday, as continued rotation into the cyclical sectors amid signs of progress in U.S.-China trade talks drove the STOXX 600 to its fourth straight week of gains.

European shares hit six-week high on trade relief, stimulus hope

Sep 11 2019

European shares hit six-week highs on Wednesday, supported by easing U.S.-China trade tensions and hopes of fresh stimulus from the European Central Bank, while news from individual companies played into the upbeat mood. | Video

Defensives lead Europe stocks lower ahead of ECB meeting

Sep 10 2019

European shares fell in early trading on Tuesday, dragged down by a sell-off in defensive sectors and on disappointing China data that stoked recession worries ahead of the European Central Bank's monetary policy meeting later this week.

European stocks close down as London lags, banks shine

Sep 09 2019

European stocks finished lower on Monday as Britain's export-heavy FTSE index tumbled due to a stronger pound, while selling in defensive sectors such as healthcare and utilities dented early gains in markets. | Video

UPDATE 2-Relief for European stocks as political tensions ease

Sep 04 2019

* Hong Kong leader withdraws extradition bill (Updates to close)

Weak data, Brexit woes knock European stocks off 1-month high

Sep 03 2019

European shares retreated from a 1-month high on Tuesday as weak U.S. factory data added to worries about global growth, while uncertainty over Britain's chaotic exit from the European Union knocked the FTSE 100 lower after a four-day run of gains.

UPDATE 2-Defensive buying drives European stocks higher; FTSE outperforms

Sep 02 2019

* Euro zone manufacturing contracted for seventh month (Updates to close)

EMERGING MARKETS-Latam stocks up, Argentine peso closes up before Fitch downgrade

Aug 16 2019

(Adds Fitch downgrade on Argentina, other details, updates prices) By Susan Mathew Aug 16 Most Latin American stocks rose on Monday, joining a rebound in global markets on hopes of fiscal and monetary stimulus in major economies, while Argentina was handed a fresh blow as Fitch downgraded its credit rating, pushing it deeper into junk territory. Stocks in the region, besides those in Argentina, gained between 2% and 0.4% as fiscal stimulus hopes from Germany and China to support growth, and rising possibility of an interest rate cut by the European Central Bank, lifted global sentiment plagued by recession worries. Meanwhile, the Argentine peso closed Friday up 4.4% in a second day of strong gains, lifted by the government's attempt to calm markets via relief measures and collaborations with opposition as well as central bank interventions. But after peso trading hours, credit rating agency Fitch downgraded Argentina to 'CCC' from 'B' citing heightened risk of policy discontinuity and greater likelihood of a default should there be a change in administration after October general elections. "I don't think it should have a meaningful nor lasting effect on investors' perception of Argentina's sovereign risk," Alejo Czerwonko, emerging markets strategist at UBS Global Wealth Management's Chief Investment Office. "The market has been reassessing the country's probability of default since the primary elections on Sunday and I don't think the publication provides information that investors didn't have already." The peso lost a around a quarter of its value to the dollar three days after a shock victory by the opposition in presidential primaries raised fears of a return to populist policies under opposition candidate Alberto Fernandez, should he win. A similar move by Moody's and Standard and Poor should not come as a surprise, he said. Argentine stocks steepened losses to hit session lows after the announcement and closed 2.1% lower, taking the week's losses to 31.5% - its worst week ever. Mexico's peso 0.2% to 19.6475 a day after the central bank cut its key interest rate by 25 basis points to 8%. Mexico's President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador on Friday said the cut will stimulate the sluggish economy. But "we see little upside for MXN in the months to come as Banxico will very likely feel comfortable cutting rates on a potential decline of USDMXN towards 19," said Morgan Stanley analysts in a note. "The shift towards yield curve behaviour and the language around core suggest to us that Banxico will try to avoid being behind the curve, which presents a meaningful change." Brazil's real fell 0.3% after 1.5% surge last session when the central bank announced its decision to sell dollars on the spot market for the first time in a decade. Analysts say this is a sign the bank is finally willing to reduce its $385 billion pile of foreign exchange reserves. Key Latin American stock indexes and currencies at 0830 GMT: Stock indexes Latest Daily % change MSCI Emerging Markets 970.27 0.7 MSCI LatAm 2609.83 1.19 Brazil Bovespa 99805.78 0.76 Mexico IPC 39355.74 2.03 Chile IPSA 4799.38 0.38 Argentina MerVal 30402.51 -2.052 Colombia IGBC 12527.47 1.1 Currencies Latest Daily % change Brazil real 4.0028 0.00 Mexico peso 19.6475 -0.23 Chile peso 708.8 0.21 Colombia peso 3427.47 1.21 Peru sol 3.378 0.38 Argentina peso 54.6000 5.13 (interbank) (Reporting by Susan Mathew in Bengaluru and Rodrigo Campos in New York; Editing by Marguerita Choy)

German stimulus hopes pull European shares from 6-month lows

Aug 16 2019

European shares rebounded from six-months lows on Friday, ending a tumultuous week on a positive note as hopes of fiscal stimulus from Germany lifted sentiment and sparked a rally in the battered banks sector, helping them post their best day in 4-1/2 months.

EMERGING MARKETS-Argentine peso jumps after heavy losses, Mexico central bank cuts rates

Aug 15 2019

(Updates prices) By Susan Mathew Aug 15 Argentina's peso jumped nearly 5% on Thursday ending a punishing three-day rout, while Mexico's peso rose after the country's central bank cut its key rate for the first time in more than 5 years. The Argentine peso closed at 57.4 pesos per dollar on signs that the country's president and his main opposition rival were determined to control an economic crisis sparked by a shock primary-election result that wiped out around a quarter of the peso's value. Opposition presidential candidate Alberto Fernandez trounced center-right President Mauricio Macri in Sunday's vote, which raised fears of a return to protectionist policies if Fernandez were to win the October general elections. Win Thin, global head of emerging market currency strategy at Brown Brothers Harriman (BBH) pinned the strength in the peso to selling of dollar by some bank's after the central bank established a ceiling for foreign exchange holdings equivalent to 5% of a bank's net worth which is set to take effect on August 20. Buenos Aires' Merval stock index rose 4.2%. In Mexico, the peso rose 0.4% after the country's central bank cut its key rate by 25 basis points to 8%, citing slowing inflation, a sluggish economy, and the recent behavior of the external and domestic yield curves. There was some knee-jerk rise right after the cut, but markets traded back to earlier levels. Analysts had been more or less split between expecting the bank to hold or cut rates. The economic indicators argue for a rate cut, "but it's a risky move given emerging markets remain under pressure; and the yield spread is one that supports EM and this is cutting a little bit into that," BBH's Thin said. Mexican stock, however, fell. In line with a choppy session on Wall Street, most Latam stock markets were mixed, with Colombia stocks rising 0.4%, while those in Brazil stocks slipped more than a percent. Brazil's real climbed 1.6%, lifted by news that the central bank said it would sell dollars outright in the spot currency market this month for the first time in over a decade in response to rising demand for liquidity. While most regional currencies rose, helped also by some trade optimism after China showed some willingness to work out a deal even as it has vowed retaliation against U.S. tariffs, Colombia's peso fell 0.4%. Colombia's gross domestic product grew 3% in the second quarter, the government said on Thursday, buoyed by the retail and financial sectors, but the print came in just below market expectations of 3.1%. Chile markets were closed for a local holiday. Key Latin American stock indexes and currencies at 2019 GMT: Stock indexes Latest Daily % change MSCI Emerging Markets 963.52 -0.09 MSCI LatAm 2579.24 -0.66 Brazil Bovespa 99056.91 -1.2 Mexico IPC 38571.73 -0.2 Argentina MerVal 31182.28 4.216 Colombia IGBC 12391.30 0.41 Currencies Latest Daily % change Brazil real 3.9903 1.57 Mexico peso 19.6027 0.37 Colombia peso 3468.8 -0.38 Peru sol 3.391 0.15 Argentina peso 57.1000 5.43 (interbank) (Reporting by Susan Mathew in Bengaluru; Editing by Sandra Maler)

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