European stocks fluctuate, bonds slip as trade war simmers

The Stoxx Europe 600 index reversed a brief gain as chemicals and tech shares led the decline, while US equity- index futures pointed to a weak opening.

May 20, 2019 10:05 IST India Infoline News Service

European-Markets
European markets swung from gains to losses while bonds slipped globally as traders cast their eyes over developments in the trade war and a series of major elections.

The dollar drifted and crude oil advanced. The Stoxx Europe 600 index reversed a brief gain as chemicals and tech shares led the decline, while US equity- index futures pointed to a weak opening. Shares were mostly mixed across Asia, but they rallied in Australia and the nation’s currency jumped after a surprise election victory for conservative Prime Minister Scott Morrison. Indian shares also surged as exit polls showed Prime Minister Narendra Modi was poised to retain power. China’s offshore yuan strengthened, signalling some relief after trade turmoil dragged down the currency to a five-month low.

Markets remain fragile after the trade war escalated, with the impact of the White House’s threats to choke Huawei Technologies Co. reverberating across the global supply chain on Monday and hitting some of the biggest component-makers. In the absence of fresh headlines on the protectionist showdown, attention will turn to a slew of US data this week as well as Federal Reserve policy-meeting minutes on Wednesday.

Elsewhere, crude climbed after Saudi Arabia and other key producers in OPEC signaled their intention to keep oil supplies constrained for the rest of the year, while pledging to prevent any genuine shortages. Treasury yields climbed. The euro steadied after five days of declines as elections for the European Parliament approached.

Source: Bloomberg

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