Bulletin
Investor Alert

Europe Markets Archives | Email alerts

March 16, 2016, 6:36 a.m. EDT

European stocks waver as caution sets in ahead of Fed decision

Losses are limited by gains for mining and energy shares

new
Watchlist Relevance
LEARN MORE

Want to see how this story relates to your watchlist?

Just add items to create a watchlist now:

  • X
    STOXX Europe 600 Index (SXXP)
  • X
    STOXX Europe 600 Oil & Gas Index EUR (SXEP)

or Cancel Already have a watchlist? Log In

By Carla Mozee, MarketWatch


Shutterstock.com
Volkswagen car sales are lagging in the German car maker’s home market and the rest of the EU.

European markets swung small between gains and losses Wednesday, as investors waited to hear what the Federal Reserve will do on interest rates.

The Stoxx Europe 600 /zigman2/quotes/210599654/delayed XX:SXXP +0.78%  turned down 0.2% at 340.19 after a higher open. Losses were limited by gains for mining and oil and gas shares /zigman2/quotes/210599627/delayed XX:SXEP +1.06%  , which took a spill in the previous session. Those losses helped drag the pan-European index lower 1.1% on Tuesday.

Caution was setting in ahead of the highly anticipated U.S. Federal Reserve policy decision, due after European trade closes.

Commodities : Oil shares found some relief as oil prices  recovered some of the ground they lost Tuesday, when West Texas Intermediate /zigman2/quotes/209724538/delayed CLJ26 0.00% crude logged its lowest settlement in more than a week. Investors later Wednesday will receive an weekly supply update from the Energy Information Administration.

In the oil group, Portuguese producer Galp SGPS /zigman2/quotes/206136034/delayed PT:GALP +3.74%  climbed 2.3% and oilfield services provider Petrofac Ltd. /zigman2/quotes/202340229/delayed UK:PFC -2.65%  picked up 2%.

Most mining shares were higher Wednesday, after a rough session Tuesday as copper producer Antofagasta PLC  /zigman2/quotes/200173667/delayed UK:ANTO -0.31%  decided not to pay a final dividend. Precious metals producer Fresnillo PLC /zigman2/quotes/201300065/delayed UK:FRES +1.32%  gained 2.1%, and Rio Tinto PLC /zigman2/quotes/208934945/delayed UK:RIO -0.27%   /zigman2/quotes/202627887/composite RIO +0.33%   /zigman2/quotes/200083756/delayed AU:RIO +2.27%  added 1.1%. But Antofagasta shares were down 2%, adding to their 4.5% drop on Tuesday.

Fed watch: Investors will look for clues as to when the Fed will begin raising interest rates again.

Expectations for policy normalization “will undoubtedly receive outsized scrutiny amid concerns the market may be too complacent on U.S. rates,” said Matt Sherwood, head of multi-asset investment strategy at Perpetual, in a note earlier this week.

The “Fed’s view of four rate hikes [this year] would spark significant economic and financial stress, but with U.S. inflation now approaching the Fed’s 2% target, market expectations of no hikes this year are equally unrealistic,” he said, adding that “investors still need to be defensively positioned.”

Read: Fed may have little reason to pause, but it will

The euro /zigman2/quotes/210561242/realtime/sampled EURUSD +0.2516%  was buying $1.1094, down from $1.1105 late Tuesday in New York.

Indexes: Germany’s DAX 30 /zigman2/quotes/210597999/delayed DX:DAX +1.59%  was up 0.7% at 9,999.28, and France’s CAC 40 /zigman2/quotes/210597958/delayed FR:PX1 +1.78%  was up 0.2% at 4,482.45.

The U.K’s FTSE 100 /zigman2/quotes/210598409/delayed UK:UKX +0.56%  was up 0.2% at 6,150.66. There, London Stock Exchange Group PLC  shares were down 0.4%. The LSE and Deutsche Börse AG /zigman2/quotes/205502669/delayed DE:DB1 +0.40%  agreed to an all-share merger, creating Europe’s biggest securities-markets operator worth more than $30 billion.

Movers: Hikma Pharmaceuticals PLC /zigman2/quotes/204872832/delayed UK:HIK +1.64%  fell 6.6% after the drug maker posted a 9.4% fall in full-year net profit on lower revenue.

TUI AG /zigman2/quotes/207049334/delayed UK:TUI +0.24%  shares dropped 5.4% and Thomas Cook Group PLC  gave up 7.5% after Citi downgraded the tour operators to sell ratings.

Economic data: Construction in the eurozone rose 3.6% on the month in January, the largest month-to-month rise since March 2012, Eurostat said Wednesday.

New car sales in the European Union rose 14% in February, helped in part by the extra sales day afforded by the leap year, data released Wednesday showed. Volkswagen AG /zigman2/quotes/203434344/delayed XE:VOW3 +2.41%   , which is reeling from the impact of its emissions-cheating crisis, underperformed both the region as a whole and its home market.

/zigman2/quotes/210599654/delayed
XX : STOXX
437.71
+3.40 +0.78%
Volume: 0.00
May 26, 2022 11:03p
loading...
/zigman2/quotes/210599627/delayed
XX : STOXX
349.46
+3.65 +1.06%
Volume: 0.00
May 26, 2022 11:03p
loading...
/zigman2/quotes/209724538/delayed
US : U.S.: Nymex
$ 71.95
0.00 0.00%
Volume: 0.00
May 26, 2022 5:05p
loading...
/zigman2/quotes/206136034/delayed
PT : Portugal: Euronext Lisbon
12.06
+0.44 +3.74%
Volume: 3.85M
May 26, 2022 4:35p
P/E Ratio
2,513
Dividend Yield
4.15%
Market Cap
€10.32 billion
Rev. per Employee
€2.62M
loading...
/zigman2/quotes/202340229/delayed
UK : U.K.: London
150.40 p
-4.10 -2.65%
Volume: 6.88M
May 26, 2022 4:35p
P/E Ratio
N/A
Dividend Yield
0.00%
Market Cap
£788.38 million
Rev. per Employee
£279,595
loading...
/zigman2/quotes/200173667/delayed
UK : U.K.: London
1,453.50 p
-4.50 -0.31%
Volume: 711,013
May 26, 2022 4:35p
P/E Ratio
15.28
Dividend Yield
7.80%
Market Cap
£14.37 billion
Rev. per Employee
£201,170
loading...
/zigman2/quotes/201300065/delayed
UK : U.K.: London
814.00 p
+10.60 +1.32%
Volume: 224,531
May 26, 2022 4:35p
P/E Ratio
19.67
Dividend Yield
3.23%
Market Cap
£5.92 billion
Rev. per Employee
£97,801
loading...
/zigman2/quotes/208934945/delayed
UK : U.K.: London
5,631.00 p
-15.00 -0.27%
Volume: 1.27M
May 26, 2022 4:35p
P/E Ratio
5.99
Dividend Yield
12.62%
Market Cap
£93.89 billion
Rev. per Employee
£935,616
loading...
/zigman2/quotes/202627887/composite
US : U.S.: NYSE
$ 72.13
+0.24 +0.33%
Volume: 2.55M
May 26, 2022 4:00p
P/E Ratio
5.55
Dividend Yield
10.98%
Market Cap
$117.79 billion
Rev. per Employee
$1.29M
loading...
/zigman2/quotes/200083756/delayed
AU : Australia: Sydney
$ 113.30
+2.52 +2.27%
Volume: 486,365
May 27, 2022 12:20p
P/E Ratio
6.60
Dividend Yield
9.59%
Market Cap
$166.58 billion
Rev. per Employee
$1.71M
loading...
/zigman2/quotes/210561242/realtime/sampled
US : Tullett Prebon
1.0757
+0.0027 +0.2516%
Volume: 0.0000
May 26, 2022 10:41p
loading...
/zigman2/quotes/210597999/delayed
DAX
DX : Xetra Indices
14,231.29
+223.36 +1.59%
Volume: 57,436
May 26, 2022 6:30p
loading...
/zigman2/quotes/210597958/delayed
FR : France: Euronext Paris
6,410.58
+111.94 +1.78%
Volume: 66,120
May 26, 2022 6:05p
loading...
/zigman2/quotes/210598409/delayed
UK : FTSE UK
7,564.92
+42.17 +0.56%
Volume: 648,110
May 26, 2022 4:56p
loading...
/zigman2/quotes/205502669/delayed
DE : Germany: Frankfurt
163.65
+0.65 +0.40%
Volume: 6.00
May 26, 2022 10:59p
P/E Ratio
N/A
Dividend Yield
N/A
Market Cap
N/A
Rev. per Employee
€555,390
loading...
/zigman2/quotes/204872832/delayed
UK : U.K.: London
1,704.00 p
+27.50 +1.64%
Volume: 680,898
May 26, 2022 4:35p
P/E Ratio
12.99
Dividend Yield
2.52%
Market Cap
£3.72 billion
Rev. per Employee
£213,370
loading...
/zigman2/quotes/207049334/delayed
UK : U.K.: London
188.75 p
+0.45 +0.24%
Volume: 4.96M
May 26, 2022 4:35p
P/E Ratio
N/A
Dividend Yield
0.00%
Market Cap
£3.36 billion
Rev. per Employee
£142,915
loading...
/zigman2/quotes/203434344/delayed
XE : Germany: Xetra
151.34
+3.56 +2.41%
Volume: 884,473
May 26, 2022 6:30p
P/E Ratio
4.18
Dividend Yield
5.00%
Market Cap
€85.15 billion
Rev. per Employee
€372,430
loading...

Carla Mozée is a reporter for MarketWatch, based in London. Follow her on Twitter @MWMozee.

This Story has 0 Comments
Be the first to comment
More News In
Markets

Story Conversation

Commenting FAQs »

Partner Center

World News from MarketWatch

Link to MarketWatch's Slice.