World Economy

Europe Markets End 2017 on Sour Note

The DAX of Germany dropped 0.48% and the CAC 40 of France fell 0.50%.The DAX of Germany dropped 0.48% and the CAC 40 of France fell 0.50%.

The majority of the European markets ended Friday's session with small losses. However, despite the weak performance, many markets are ending the year with impressive gains.

One notable exception to Friday's overall weak trend was the FTSE 100 of the UK. The FTSE wrapped up its shortened session with a solid increase, which drove the market to a new high for the year, CNBC reported.

Overall trading volume remained thin ahead of the long holiday weekend. There were few catalysts to drive trading and many traders remain away from their desks after the Christmas holiday.

The DAX of Germany dropped 0.48% and the CAC 40 of France fell 0.50%. The FTSE 100 of the UK gained 0.85%, but the SMI of Switzerland finished lower by 0.25%.

Eurozone money supply grew at a slightly slower pace in November, the European Central Bank said Friday. The broad monetary aggregate M3 grew 4.9% year-on-year in November, slower than the 5% increase seen in October. Economists had forecast a 4.9% rise.

A measure reflecting the current economic situation in euroarea reached its highest level in more than eleven years in December, results of a survey by the Bank of Italy and the Center for Economic Policy Research showed Friday.

The euro-coin indicator rose to 0.91 in December from 0.84 in November. This was the highest reading since May 2006.

German consumer price index rose 1.7% year-on-year following 1.8% increase in November. Economists had forecast 1.5% inflation. Spain's inflation eased to 1.2% in December from 1.7% in November. This was the lowest rate since November 2016. Inflation was forecast to slow moderately to 1.5%.

Meanwhile, the man in charge of carrying out the ECB's bond purchases sees "a reasonable chance" the €2.55 trillion stimulus program will not be extended again when it expires in September, he told a Chinese financial magazine.

Benoit Coeure, the ECB board member in charge of its market operations, was once a key supporter of President Mario Draghi's ultra-easy policy but has been opening the door to an eventual withdrawal of stimulus in recent months.

"Given what we see in the economy, I believe that there is a reasonable chance that the extension of our asset purchase program decided in October can be the last," Coeure told Caixin Global.

He said the ECB could keep the program in place if needed but also had "plenty of instruments with which to react" if inflation in the eurozone, currently seen below 2% for years to come, turned out higher than expected.

Add new comment

Read our comment policy before posting your viewpoints