In European Equity Markets stocks pulled back on Thursday with Spanish blue chips suffering their biggest one-day loss in six months, weighed down by losses among banks, while Italian lender UniCredit shone after solid results. The DAX fell 0.3 percent, while Spain’s IBEX lagged with a fall of 1.6 percent, its biggest daily loss since Nov. 10. The pan-European STOXX 600 index fell 0.5 percent, while euro zone blue chips lost 0.6 percent. UniCredit reported better-than-expected first-quarter profits, higher revenues and a fall in loan losses. German commercial broadcaster ProSiebensat fell 5.9 percent after it reported a disappointing advertising outlook.
In Currency Markets the U.S. dollar fell for the first time in five days against the yen on Thursday as investors locked in recent gains and amid concerns after U.S. President Donald Trump unexpectedly dismissed the Federal Bureau of Investigation chief James Comey. In late morning trading, the dollar fell 0.6 percent against the safe-haven yen to 113.61 yen. Against another safe-haven currency, the Swiss franc, the dollar fell 0.2 percent to 1.0069 franc. Sterling, meanwhile, slid 0.5 percent to $1.2879. The kiwi was last down 1.4 percent against the greenback at US$0.6842. The dollar index was down 0.1 percent at 99.606 against a basket of major currencies.
In Commodities Markets oil prices rose more than 1 percent on Thursday, as large drawdowns in U.S. inventories and growing support for continued OPEC output cuts boosted confidence that a seemingly insurmountable glut might finally diminish. Brent was 69 cents higher, or 1.4 percent, at $50.91 a barrel after hitting a high of $51.16. U.S. light crude oil was up 68 cents at $48.01. Spot gold was up 0.2 percent at $1,221.24 an ounce. Among other precious metals, silver was up 0.4 percent at $16.20 an ounce and platinum was 0.1 percent higher at $909.41. Palladium was up 0.3 percent at $800.55 an ounce.
In US Equity Markets stocks trimmed losses on Thursday, but were still on track for their biggest one-day fall in nearly a month due to declines in retail and bank shares. The Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 0.21 percent, at 20,899.7, the S&P 500 was down 0.37 percent, at 2,390.74 and the Nasdaq Composite was down 0.42 percent, at 6,103.11. Shares of Snapchat owner Snap Inc lost 20 percent after the company reported a slowdown in user growth and revenue in its first earnings report as a public company. Merck was up 1.5 percent after the U.S. FDA cleared its lung cancer combination treatment.
In Bond Markets U.S. Treasury yields turned higher on Thursday, touching their highest levels since at least the end of March, as a stronger-than-forecast rise in producer prices in April buttressed the notion of U.S. inflation accelerating in the second quarter. In early Thursday trading, the benchmark 10-year Treasury yield touched 2.421 percent, its highest level since March 31, while two-year yield reached 1.367 percent, a level last seen on March 15