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, slightly outperforming broader regional indexes, while Spain’s IBEX lagged with a fall of 1.6 percent. The pan-European STOXX 600 index fell 0.5 percent, while euro zone blue chips fell 0.6 percent. Telecoms stocks were among the worst-performing, with BT down 4.5 percent after it announced 4,000 job cuts in a restructuring to recover from a year it called “challenging”. German commercial broadcaster ProSiebensat fell 5.9 percent after it reported a disappointing advertising outlook.
In Currency Markets the U.S. dollar fell on Friday, easing from a roughly two-month high against the yen touched in the prior session and falling against the euro, after weaker-than-expected U.S. economic data raised doubts about whether the Federal Reserve will assume a hawkish bent through the end of the year. The euro rose as much as 0.6 percent against the dollar to a session high of $1.0928. The euro had fallen to a more than two-week low on Thursday of $1.0838. The dollar fell as much as 0.6 percent against the yen to a session low of 113.21 yen after hitting a roughly two-month high of 114.36 yen on Thursday. The dollar index was last down 0.4 percent at 99.265.
In Commodities Markets oil prices fell modestly on Friday, pulling back after two days of gains, as concern over U.S. production took some of the shine out of optimistic signals from OPEC this week about output cuts. Benchmark Brent was trading 21 cents lower at $50.56 barrel. U.S. light crude oil was down 29 cents at $47.54. Spot gold was up 0.4 percent at $1,227.21 per ounce. Among other precious metals, silver rose 0.6 percent to $16.36, set for its first weekly rise in four. Platinum inched 0.2 percent higher to $915.74, while palladium rose 0.3 percent to $804.50. Copper gained 0.3 percent after hitting a one-week high in the previous session with investors encouraged by top copper consumer China’s easing of monetary policy to stimulate growth.
In US Equity Markets stocks edged lower on Friday and were on track to book losses for the week as weak economic data weighed on financial shares. The Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 0.16 percent, at 20,885.27, the S&P 500 was down 0.20 percent, at 2,389.48 and the Nasdaq Composite was up 0.04 percent, at 6,118.38. The S&P 500 financial sector fell 0.7 percent, while industrials were off 0.8 percent. Retail stocks were under pressure yet again after J.C. Penney reported lower-than-expected comparable store sales, sending its shares down nearly 10 percent. GE was the top percentage loser on the Dow, down 2.7 percent after Deutsche Bank downgraded its shares to “sell” from “hold”.
In Bond Markets U.S. Treasury yields fell on Friday as weaker-than-expected data on domestic consumer prices and retail sales in April scaled back expectations of a strong U.S. economic rebound in the second quarter and revived appetite for bonds. The benchmark 10-year Treasury yield fell 6 basis points to 2.338 percent. The 30-year bond yield decreased 4 basis points to 2.995 percent. It climbed to 3.059 percent on Thursday, which was the highest since March 21, Reuters data showed.