Sep. 18, 2014, 6:05 AM
- Moody's this morning informed France it will downgrade its government rating to AA2 from AA1. (L'Opinion)
- Citigroup analyst Peter Goves said earlier this week he expected the ratings agency to put France on review for a possible downgrade tomorrow. Still, the move was not unanticipated, and there is no immediate reaction apparent in French or EU securities.
- ETF: EWQ
Sep. 10, 2014, 4:17 AM
- France says it will heavily overshoot its already delayed EU budget deficit target for next year, saying it now aims to reach the required level of 3% of national output only in 2017.
- The budget deficit will be reduced by 4.3% of GDP in 2015, following this year's level of 4.4%.
- Finance Minister Michel Sapin blamed the delay on the slow rate of economic growth and low inflation in the euro zone, and demanded that the EU "collectively take into account" an economic situation "unprecedented in recent European history."
- ETFs: EWQ
Sep. 4, 2014, 8:46 AM
- The ECB cut its growth forecast for the EU for 2014 and 2015, says Mario Draghi at his post-meeting press conference, but raised its outlook for 2016. Inflation is seen at lower-than-expected levels in the coming months before increasing gradually in 2016.
- The central bank, says Draghi, will start to purchase a broad portfolio of euro-denominated covered bonds and also begin to buy ABS, with further details coming in October. It sounds like the Germans are on board: "Should it become necessary, the Governing Council is unanimous in using additional measures."
- The Stoxx 50 is now higher by 1.5% and the euro lower by 1% to $1.3015.
- ETFs: FXE, VGK, EUO, EWG, FEZ, EWP, ERO, IEV, HEDJ, EPV, EZU, EWQ, DRR, FEU, FEP, UPV, EUFX, ULE, DBGR, ADRU, DXGE, FEEU, URR, EURL, FGM, EURZ, DBEU, QDEU, IEUR, FIEU, HEWG, QESP
- Previously: Euro tumbles, stocks gain as ECB cuts rates
Aug. 25, 2014, 6:12 AM
- France has been thrown into a new political crisis after President Francois Hollande told Prime Minister Manuel Valls to form a new government, following criticism of his policies by the country's Economy Minister Arnaud Montebourg.
- A statement released by Francois Hollande's office states that a new government will be formed on Tuesday in line with the "direction he (the president) has defined for our country."
- ETFs: EWQ
Aug. 19, 2014, 8:59 AM
- Reversing a big YTD trend, U.S. investors pulled nearly $4B out of Europe-focused ETFs over the past week. Among the reasons, suggests Markit's Simon Colvin: Europe is seen as more exposed to Russian sanctions, anemic European growth, and a strengthening U.S. dollar. "The only certainty is that a growing portion of American investors think that their assets are better invested outside of Europe, something which wasn't the case six weeks ago."
- Interestingly, it's the "core" Eurozone countries like Germany (NYSEARCA:EWG) and France (NYSEARCA:EWQ) with which U.S. investors are least interested, while Italy (NYSEARCA:EWI) and Spain (NYSEARCA:EWP) have seen net inflows over the past three months.
- Europe equity ETFs: VGK, FEZ, IEV, HEDJ, EPV, EZU, FEU, FEP, UPV, ADRU, FEEU, EURL, EURZ, DBEU, IEUR, FIEU
Aug. 14, 2014, 6:46 AM
- Euro-Zone GDP failed to grow in the second quarter following 12 months of weak growth, causing European equity markets to fall and increasing pressure on the ECB to do more to boost growth and inflation.
- Data released this morning by the European Union's statistics office translates into 0.2% growth in annualized terms, down from the first quarter's 0.8% pace.
- The euro zone's three largest economies, which account for two-thirds of the region's €9.6T ($12.8T) GDP, all did not post any growth. German GDP shrank 0.2% from the first quarter and Italy's output fell at a similar pace. The French economy, the bloc's second largest behind Germany, stagnated for a second straight quarter.
- The region's next largest economies, Spain and the Netherlands, posted some growth but not enough to offset their larger peers.
- ETFs: FXE, RSX, VGK, EUO, EWG, FEZ, GREK, EWP, EWI, DFE, RUSL, ERO, RSXJ, IEV, ERUS, RUSS, EWL, HEDJ, EU, EWU, EPV, EUFN, EZU, EWD, NORW, EWQ, EPOL, EIRL, PLND, RBL, EWO, DRR, GXF, FEU, EWN, GUR, EWK, EDEN, FDD, EWGS, FEP, ESR, UPV, EUFX, PGAL, ULE, IFEU, DBGR, ENOR, ADRU, EWUS, EUDG, DXGE, FEEU, GERJ, URR, FGM, EFNL, EURL, FKU, FSZ, DXPS, RUDR, EURZ, DBEU, QDEU, IEUR, FIEU, EUMV, HEWG, SMEZ, QESP, DBUK, QGBR
Jul. 10, 2014, 12:30 PM
- Down more than 2% at the session low, the Stoxx 50 (FEZ) closed with a loss of 1.6%. Spain and Italy were each off about 2%, while Germany (EWG) lost 1.5%, France (EWQ) 1.3%, and the U.K. 0.7%. Portugal's PSI 20 Index dove 4.2%, led by Banco Espirito Santo's 17.2% loss (it was halted from trade before the market close).
- Previously: European banks tumble on Portugal trouble
- ETFs: VGK, FEZ, IEV, HEDJ, EPV, EZU, FEU, FEP, UPV, ADRU, FEEU, EURL, EURZ, DBEU, IEUR, FIEU
- With Europe closed, the U.S. is in rally mode, with an early 1% loss in the major averages now whittled down to a negligible amount.
- ETFs: VV, SCHX, FEX, JKD, EQL, EEH, IWL, ERW, FWDD, SYE
Jun. 5, 2014, 7:55 AM
- The Stoxx 50 (FEZ) is up 0.8% after being about flat ahead of the ECB rate decision, at which the central bank cut all three of its benchmark rates, including taking the deposit facility rate into negative territory.
- Italy (EWI) with a 1.3% gain and France (EWQ) ahead 1% lead the way.
- The euro (FXE) tumbles about 40 pips, now off 0.3% on the session and buying $1.3563.
- Europe equity ETFs: RSX, VGK, EWG, FEZ, GREK, EWP, EWI, DFE, RUSL, IEV, RSXJ, EWL, ERUS, EWU, RUSS, EPV, EZU, EWD, HEDJ, NORW, EWQ, EPOL, EIRL, PLND, EWO, RBL, GXF, EWN, FEU, EWK, FDD, EWGS, FEP, EDEN, UPV, EWUS, DBGR, PGAL, ADRU, ENOR, GERJ, DXGE, FEEU, FGM, EURL, FKU, EFNL, EUDG, DXPS, FSZ, EURZ, FIEU, RUDR, DBEU, HEWG, DBUK
- Euro ETFs: FXE, EUO, ERO, DRR, EUFX, ULE, URR
- ECB chief Mario Draghi's press conference begins at 8:30 ET.
May 30, 2014, 7:05 AM
- S&P 500 (SPY) futures are down 0.1%, about the same as Dow and Nasdaq 100 futures.
- Europe's mixed, with France (EWQ) leading on the downside, -0.6%, and Italy (EWI) the biggest gainer, +0.5%. Asia was little-changed overnight.
- The 10-year Treasury yield is up one basis point at 2.48% and gold continues to slump, down $4 per ounce to $1,253.
- ETFs: SPY, QQQ, SH, DIA, SSO, SDS, PSQ, VOO, IVV, SPXU, UPRO, TQQQ, SPXL, QID, RSP, SQQQ, DOG, QLD, DXD, RWL, EPS, UDOW, SDOW, DDM, BXUB, QQEW, QQQE, SFLA, QQXT, SPLX, BXUC, SPUU
May 26, 2014, 5:31 AM
- Euroskeptic and far-right parties have made strong gains in some countries in elections for the European parliament as voters expressed resentment at the EU and the severe austerity it has promoted.
- A stand-out result is the 25% that the anti-euro Front National won in France, where President François Hollande's Socialists received just 14%.
- In Britain, UKIP, which wants the country to leave the EU, took the most votes with a share of more than 27%. Anti-EU parties also did well in Greece and Denmark.
- Markets seem to be fairly sanguine about the results, with the euro +0.1% at $1.3638.
- In Italy, the center-left ruling Democrat Party, led by new Prime Minister Matteo Renzi, won 41% of the vote. "The outcome is...likely to delight the markets, where investors can be expected to see it as a resounding vote of confidence in the 39 year-old prime minister, his youthful cabinet and their ambitious program of political and economic reforms," writes the Economist's Charlemagne column. The FTSE Mib is +2.5%.
- Euro Stoxx 600 +0.35%, London closed, Paris +0.7%, Frankfurt +1.5%, Madrid +0.7%.
- ETFs: GREK, EWI, EU, EWU, EWQ, EDEN, IFEU, EWUS, ITLY, ITLT, FKU, DXPS, DBUK
May 15, 2014, 5:22 AM
- French Prime Minister Manuel Valls has signed a decree that extends the state's powers to block foreign takeovers to the energy, water, transport, telecoms and health sectors, with any acquisition in what the government now considers to be "strategic" industries needing the approval of the Economy Minister.
- The move adds to the government's authority to prevent deals in the nuclear, encryption and vaccines fields.
- It will also give France more say in the potential sale of Alstom's (ALSMY) energy assets to GE (GE) or Siemens (SI). French Economy Minster Arnaud Montebourg has criticized the GE proposal and advocated a deal with Siemens.
- The risk is that foreign investors could be further put off from doing business in France at a time that the economy is stagnating.
- ETF: EWQ
May 15, 2014, 1:39 AM
Apr. 23, 2014, 3:16 AM
- French flash manufacturing PMI has dropped to 50.9 in April from 52.1 in March and missed consensus of 51.9.
- Services has fallen to 50.3 from 51.5 and vs 51.4.
- Manufacturing output has declined to 51.6 from 53.3.
- Composite output has slipped to 50.5 from 51.8.
- The weaker rise in activity "reflected stalling new business, while staffing levels were cut at a sharper rate," says Markit, adding that companies reported hesitancy among clients. "The business climate looks set to remain frail."
- The CAC 40 (EWQ) is -0.3%, while the euro dives a bit and is now flat at $1.3808. (PR)
Apr. 10, 2014, 2:57 AM
- French CPI rose 0.5% on month in March after increasing 0.6% in February and came in below consensus that was also +0.6%.
- On year, inflation slowed to 0.6% from 1.1% and vs 0.8%.
- Excluding tobacco, CPI +0.5% vs +0.5% previously. (PR)
- Industrial output grew 0.1% vs -0.3% in February and vs forecasts of +0.3%. (PR)
- CAC 40 futures (EWQ) -0.1%.
Apr. 8, 2014, 2:52 AM
- France's trade surplus narrowed to €3.4B in February from €5.6B in January and was below consensus of €5.3B.
- Exports slipped to €36.2B from €36.31B.
- Imports declined to €39.6B from €41.92B.
- The budget deficit doubled to €25.7B from €12.7B.
- CAC 40 (EWQ) futures are +0.15%, while the euro is flat at $1.374.
- Finance Ministry Web site
Apr. 3, 2014, 3:59 AM
- French services PMI returned to expansion territory in March and increased to a 26-month high of 51.5 (flash 51.4) from 47.2 in February.
- Composite PMI rose to a 31-month high of 51.8 (51.6) from 47.9.
- "Tentative signs of improving demand and confidence seem to be supporting the firmer trend," says Markit, "but we need to see some consolidation in the coming months before firms will be sufficiently encouraged to invest more and begin hiring to any real extent.
- The CAC 40 (EWQ) is -0.2%. (PR)
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