The main European equity benchmarks are now registering moderate falls. That as investors brace for the start, tomorrow, of the US Federal Reserve’s Jackson Hole Symposium. Nevertheless, the most relevant news flow concerns the policy debate within the Eurozone.
Thus, a few observers are saying today (again) that little ought to be expected of next week’s European Central Bank (ECB) policy meeting, although there are others who remind us that this was to be expected –to a certain extent- given that Germany’s constitutional court has yet to rule on the legality of the Eurozone’s “big bazooka”, the so-called European Stability Mechanism (ESM).
Nevertheless, if investors’ patience is now limited 'at best' then time to act may be even scarcer. The Wall Street Journal thus cites “market chatter” today to the effect that Spain faces a potential cut in its sovereign bond rating come September.
Despite the above, there are reports of one of Chancellor Merkel's advisers saying that he is opposed to unlimited bond purchases by the European Central Bank.
Italy’s Treasury has today auctioned approximately 7.3bn euros in medium and long-term debt today, slightly below the top end of the range targeted.
Carrefour, the world's second-largest retailer –no less- plans to cut up to 600 jobs in France as part of its chief executive officer’s new cost-cutting plans.
Shares of Vivendi are now rising despite the company reporting a slide in first-half operating profit; although management has confirmed its 2012 profit targets.
From a sector stand-point the worst performance on the DJ Stoxx 600 is now to be seen in the following industrial groups: automobiles (-2.5%), basic resources (-1.79%) and chemicals (-1.16%).
Spanish prices come in well ahead of forecasts
Spain’s consumer price index rose at a 2.7% year-on-year clip in August (Consensus: 2.2%).
Germany's unemployment rate for the month of August has come in at 6.8%, as expected.
Slight gain for the single currency
The euro/dollar is now rising by 0.10%, to the 1.2544 dollar level.
Front month Brent crude futures are now moving up by 0.680 dollars to the 113.31 dollar per barrel mark on the ICE.