Member access

4-Traders Homepage  >  News

News

Latest NewsCompaniesMarketsEconomy & ForexCommoditiesHot NewsMost Read NewsRecomm.Business LeadersVideosCalendar 

EUROPE MARKETS: Europe Stocks Fall On FOMC Minutes, PMIs

02/21/2013 | 06:58am US/Eastern

By Sara Sjolin, MarketWatch

LONDON (MarketWatch) -- European stocks saw steep losses on Thursday, as euro-zone data disappointed a day after minutes from the U.S. Federal Reserve's latest meeting illustrated a split over the central bank's monetary-easing program.

The Stoxx Europe 600 index lost 1.2% to 285.66, with banks and mining firms posting some of the biggest declines.

"We have quite a few triggers for nervousness coming through today. You had a rise in the markets for a while and people were becoming more and more nervous and looking for the first crack, " said Justin Urquhart Stewart, co-founder of Seven Investment Management.

"Nothing fundamentally has changed. On the longer term, the economy is still healing, but markets were getting ahead of themselves and waiting for economic data to back it up. We had a wave of everyone thinking the glass was half full, but now that perception has changed," he said.

Shares of heavyweight miner BHP Billiton PLC (>> BHP Billiton Limited) shaved off 3.3%, after Citigroup cut the firm to neutral from buy, saying that positive catalysts such as capital-expenditure cuts and cost reductions are now priced in.

Shares of AXA SA gave up 2.2%, as the insurance firm reported a drop in 2012 profit.

Investors further trained their attention on the U.S., where minutes from the Federal Open Market Committee's January meeting released late Wednesday showed some members expressed concerns about the bank's $85 billion monthly asset purchases. Several members said the central bank should prepare to vary the pace of the quantitative-easing plan depending on the outlook. .

U.S. stocks fell sharply and retreated from multiyear highs after the report, with stock futures also indicating a lower open on Thursday. .

"We can expect markets to be a little bit more volatile from here. People will be nervous until they get clarification on the U.S. deficit, the Italian election, growth signals from Germany and if the U.K. will lose its triple-A credit rating," Urquhart Stewart said.

Back in Europe, preliminary readings of purchasing managers' indexes from the major economies stole the limelight. The preliminary composite purchasing-managers' index, or PMI, for the euro zone slumped to a two-month low of 47.3 in February, indicating the region's downturn steepened. Economists surveyed by Dow Jones Newswires had forecast a February reading of 48.5. .

The manufacturing PMI for Germany rose to 50.1, a 12-month high, while the same reading for France climbed to 43.6, marking a 2-month high. The French reading, however, missed expectations. A reading above 50 indicates expansion.

Germany's DAX 30 index sank 1.7% to 7,594.70, with Deutsche Bank AG (>> Deutsche Bank AG (USA)) down 3.6% and Commerzbank AG off 2.9%.

In France, Société Générale SA dropped 3.1%. The CAC 40 index erased 1.6% to 3,650.49.

U.K.'s FTSE 100 index lost 1.6% to 6,295.13. Shares of HSBC Holdings PLC (>> HSBC Holdings plc) fell 1.9%.

Subscribe to WSJ: http://online.wsj.com?mod=djnwires

Latest news
Date Title
<1m ago VCE Enters Next Phase of Growth and Innovation as an EMC Business; Strategic Investors Cisco and VMware Continue Full Support and Alignment
<1m ago September mortgage approvals fall to lowest level since July 2013 - BBA
1m ago MECOM : Earnings Fall On Weak Dutch Business, Sluggish Advertising
3m ago ADAMAS FINANCE ASIA : Further Exit with 28.2% IRR Highlights Strength of Repositioning Strategy
3m ago DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC ENTERPRISES REPUBLIC OF SOU : Special General Meeting of SAA Board on 23 October 2014
3m ago UFU ULSTER FARMERS' UNION : on EU Commission Group to discuss CAP Direct Payments and Greening
3m ago MARWYN VALUE INVESTORS : Net Asset Value
3m ago TAMBURI INVESTMENT PARTNERS : Meeting partecipation “Italian Corporate M&A Practice Group Meeting”, in Baker & McKenzie office, Milan
3m ago KUMBA IRON ORE : production and sales report for the quarter ended 30 September 2014
3m ago SOFTBANK : Dividend Payout (Interim Dividend)
Latest news
Advertisement
Hot News 
FOXTONS : Downgrades Full-Year Earnings Guidance On Poor Third Quarter
BLOOMSBURY PUBLISHING : Unaudited Interim Results for the six months ended 31 August 2014
UNISYS : Patent Application Titled "Systems and Methods for Identifying Fraud in Transactions Committed by a Cohort of Fraudsters" Published Online
WILLBROS : Harwood Feffer LLP : Announces Investigation of Willbros Group, Inc.
NEWCASTLE INVESTMENT : Announces Details for Completion of New Senior Spin-Off and Investor Call on October 17, 2014 at 8:30 AM ET
Most Read News
1d ago ATMEL : Patent Issued for Apparatus and Method for Increasing the Quantity of Discrete Electronic Components in an Integrated Circuit Package
1d ago TERADYNE : beats Street 3Q forecasts
1d ago EXELON : ICC Approves ComEd’s Grand Prairie Gateway Project
1d ago AT&T revenue misses forecasts as more customers bring own phones
1d ago NORTHFIELD BANCORP : Announces Third Quarter 2014 Results
Most recommended articles
6m ago UK retail sales fall in September, hit by weak clothing demand
16m ago Apple CEO says to add 25 stores in China within two years - Sina
23m ago French business slump deepens as firms slash prices - PMI
26m ago Bank of England's Broadbent says underlying interest rates to eventually rise
30m ago EURO ZONE BUSINESS GROWTH UNEXPECTEDLY GAINS PACE, PRICES STILL FALLING : Pmi
Dynamic quotes  
ON
| OFF