Europe News

European markets lose ground; pound tumbles ahead of Carney speech


European stocks extended losses on Tuesday afternoon after the pound slipped ahead of the Bank of England (BoE) governor Mark Carney's appearance at the House of Lords economics committee.

The pan-European Stoxx 600 was 0.35 percent in the red. The U.K.'s FTSE 100, boosted by the fall in the pound, closed 0.45 percent higher with the French CAC 40 and Germany's DAX falling 0.26 and 0.04 percent respectively.

Meanwhile, in the US, the Dow Jones industrial average continued to trade down 0.23 percent as the broader S&P 500 index was also in the red by 0.28 percent.

The pound sterling's sudden drop came ahead of BoE governor Mark Carney's speech in which he faced questions over whether another rate cut would be necessary. The U.S. dollar moved higher, however, supported by a 0.7 percent rise in August's house prices. At the close, the sterling/dollar was trading 0.57 percent in the red.

Basic resources stocks were outperforming other sectors and extended gains in Europe's afternoon trade by 3.22 percent. Insurance, oil and gas, chemicals and telecoms stocks were able to join basic resources in the green at the close.

The telecoms sector closed 1.53 percent in the green. Orange, the French telecom company reported Tuesday morning an increase in earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) of 1.6 percent in the third quarter to $3.91 billion. It saw an increase of 845 000 new mobile contracts in the same period.

The Norwegian aluminum Norsk Hydro beat expectations when reporting a smaller drop in its underlying profits to about $179 million. Higher aluminum prices have offset lower metal sales as well as effects of negative currency.

Apple is presenting its earnings later on Tuesday.

More corporate earnings

Syngenta announced Tuesday morning sales of $2.5 billion in the third quarter of this year, slightly below a Reuters estimate of $2.6 billion. The Swiss agribusiness firm is delaying into 2017 its deal with ChemChina to allow competition authorities to conclude their work. On Monday, the stock saw its shares falling as much as 9 percent after media reports announcing the delay.

Novartis saw its net income going up by 7 percent in the third quarter, but earnings per share (EPS) went down about 3 percent. EPS stood at $1.23.

Banks see-saw day

The Italian Banco Monte Dei Paschi Di Siena saw shares initially go up 26 percent after announcing a capital increase and cuts in workforce but however were suspended from trading following a subsequent 23 percent fall as traders booked profits.

Swedbank surprised on Tuesday morning when it announced a net profit increase of $541 million in the third quarter of 2016.

German DAX hits a 2016 high

Photographer | Collection | Getty Images

The German DAX touched new territory on Tuesday hitting 10,827.72 points. The stock was pushed higher after the German IFO institute said that the business climate in the largest euro zone economy continued to rebound in October.

Earlier on Tuesday, data showed business climate going slightly downwards in France in the month of October. The French statistical office said its business confidence reading stood at 101 this month, down from 102 last month.

The International Energy Agency said Tuesday that global demand for oil is set to decrease next year to 1.2 million barrels per day. This represents a fall of 0.4 million barrels a day compared to 2016. Oil prices remain around the $50 level.

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