European markets ended lower Thursday as negative sentiment on the back of ongoing U.S. debt ceiling negotiations continued to weigh.
After a choppy day, the benchmark Stoxx 600 finished around 0.24% lower. Tech stocks bucked the trend to end 1.8% higher following Nvidia's blockbuster results, which gave related stocks a boost. Dutch chip machine maker ASML ended the day almost 5% higher.
Other sectors slipped, however, while oil and gas stocks fell around 2%.
U.S. markets were also buoyed by Nvidia's numbers, with the S&P 500 0.48% higher and Nasdaq up 1.4% by 4:40 p.m. London time. This despite Fitch Ratings placing the United States' AAA rating on a negative rating watch, saying the debt ceiling negotiations have raised the risks that the government could miss payments on some of its obligations.
Elsewhere, data from the German statistics office on Thursday showed a downward revision to gross domestic product from zero to -0.3% for the first three months of the year, placing Europe's biggest economy in a technical recession. The DAX index was 0.25% lower.
Europe markets end lower
Semiconductor ETFs hit new 52-week highs
Multiple semiconductor ETFs reached new 52-week highs Thursday morning, led by Nvidia shares rallying more than 24% following its earnings and current quarter forecast announcement.
The VanEck Semiconductor ETF was up 6.5% Thursday, on pace for its strongest day of the year back to Nov. 10, 2022. The iShares Semiconductor ETF was up 4.4%.
The broader Technology Select Sector SPDR (XLK) Fund also gained 2.3% and reached a new 52-week high.
— Hakyung Kim, Gina Francolla
Chip firms boosted by Nvidia results
Nvidia reported earnings and revenue that beat market expectations on Wednesday. But its sales forecast of about $11 billion for the second quarter — more than 50% higher than Wall Street estimates — was what sent the U.S. giant's stock surging more than 24% in after-hours trade.
— Arjun Kharpal
We want to increase our shareholder payouts, says Mediobanca CEO
Alberto Nagel, CEO of Mediobanca, discusses the Italian investment bank's three-year strategy and the risks the business faces.
Potential U.S. rating downgrade comes as ‘no surprise,’ economist says
Carl Weinberg, chief economist at High Frequency Economics, discusses U.S. debt ceiling talks and Fitch's decision to put the United States' AAA long-term foreign-currency issuer default rating on negative watch.
UK net migration hits record high of 606,000
Net migration to the U.K. totaled a record high of 606,000 in 2022, new figures showed.
It comes despite repeated pledges by the ruling Conservative party to reduce the number, and with party members divided on the need to increase migration to fill labor shortages.
The government this week said it would tighten rules on student visas, reducing the number of students allowed to bring dependents to the U.K. and restricting the switching of student visas to working visas.
— Jenni Reid
UK borrowing rates close in on last year’s ‘mini-budget’ crisis levels
U.K. borrowing costs are nearing levels not seen since the bond market crisis triggered by former Prime Minister Liz Truss' 2022 mini-budget.
U.K. consumer price inflation rate fell by less than expected in April, figures showed Wednesday. The annual consumer price index dropped from 10.1% in March to 8.7% in April, well above consensus estimates and the Bank of England's forecast of 8.4%.
This fueled hawkish market bets on Bank of England rate rises.
— Elliot Smith
Europe stocks slip
Sectors were mixed, with technology 1.65% higher but few other gains. Media and retail stocks led losses, both down around 1.2%.
— Jenni Reid
German economy enters recession
The German economy entered a technical recession in the first quarter of this year, as households tightened spending.
Data from the German statistics office showed a downward revision to GDP from zero to -0.3% for the period, after Europe's biggest economy recorded a 0.5% contraction in the last quarter of 2022.
— Silvia Amaro
UK household energy bills to fall for first time since crisis
Britain's energy regulator Ofgem announced household gas and electricity bills will be capped at £2,074 ($2,562) annually for the three months from July 1, owing to lower wholesale prices.
The cap was previously £3,280, though the government intervened to make the average household pay no more than £2,500.
It represents the first time since the energy crisis began in late 2021 that consumer prices will fall, though they remain nearly double their average October 2021 levels. The regulator last year shortened its cap revision period from six to three months in light of market volatility.
On Wednesday U.K. inflation figures showed a moderation in price rises. However, headline and core figures were above expectations and inflation in areas such as food remains near record levels, keeping pressure on the Bank of England to continue hiking interest rates.
— Jenni Reid
CNBC Pro: Morgan Stanley names 2 chip stocks with 'significant upside' as China bans Micron
Morgan Stanley identified two memory chip stocks with significant potential for growth as China bans chips made by Micron, a major U.S.-based memory chipmaker.
The bank predicts an upturn in the memory chip market, and adds that the influence of artificial intelligence on memory chips has been underestimated.
— Ganesh Rao
CNBC Pro: These 4 stocks could double in price — including one tech giant, says financial research firm
Some corners of the market may have been overbought this year, but there are still long-term opportunities for investors, according to financial research firm Redburn.
"Which stocks have the capacity to double over two to three years? Redburn analysts have chosen 12 companies where changes in the competitive or financial environment or management action could realise outsize value for shareholders," the firm wrote in a May 23 report.
Here are four of them.
— Weizhen Tan
European markets: Here are the opening calls
European markets are expected to open higher Thursday.
The U.K.'s FTSE 100 index is expected to open 20 points higher at 7,600, Germany's DAX up 48 points at 15,259, France's CAC up 4 points at 7,072 and Italy's FTSE MIB up 73 points at 28,085, according to data from IG.
On the data front, preliminary inflation data for Germany and Spain in September are due, as well as Italian consumer confidence for the same month. There are no major earnings.
— Holly Ellyatt
Fed officials are uncertain on whether more rate hikes are needed, minutes show
The Fed minutes showed "uncertainty" from participants about whether to increase rates for an 11th time at its June meeting.
There appeared to be two camps in the Fed now, according to the minutes. One group that contained "some" members judged that progress in reducing inflation was "unacceptably slow" and would necessitate further hikes. The other, backed by "several" FOMC members, saw slowing economic growth in which "further policy firming after this meeting may not be necessary."
The minutes do not identify individual members nor do they quantify "some" or "several" with specific numbers. However, in Fed parlance, "some" is thought to be more than "several."
Bottom line, the minutes showed the Fed would be closely watching the incoming data to decide whether to hike rates again on June 14.
— Jeff Cox, John Melloy
Correction: In Fed parlance, "some" is thought to be more than "several." An earlier version misstated the difference.