European shares steady on upbeat PMI data

Credit: Reuters Studio
Published on August 22, 2019 - Duration: 01:21s

European shares steady on upbeat PMI data

European shares traded close to flat on Thursday as upbeat surveys on Germany and the euro zone offset signs that U.S. policymakers had not intended to start a cycle of interest rate cuts with last month's move.

Francis Maguire reports.


European shares steady on upbeat PMI data

Some relief for European traders Thursday.

As the IHS Markit Flash PMI's rose above expectations in August.

The index - which tracks activity in the Euro zone's manufacturing and services sectors - rose to 51.8 in the Euro zone - above analyst predictions of 51.2.

- Below 50 would mark contraction.

It showed Euro zone business growth picked-up slightly in August Helped by solid performance in the services sector, and manufacturing contracting at a slower pace.

The data helped the pan-European STOXX 600 recover from initial losses to trade just 0.1% lower early mornings.

Major stocks markets have steadied this week on signs of stimulus moves by central banks and governments to fight possible recession.

But markets are still on track to finish August lower.

(SOUNDBITE) (English) CHARLES STANLEY CHIEF INVESTMENT COMMENTATOR, GARRY WHITE, SAYING: "There are two main issues - the Trade War and the Federal Reserve.

The market and Donald Trump want the Federal Reserve to reduce interest rates more than Jerome Powell wants to.

So, there is a pressure dynamic there.

So, this weekend when we have Jerome Powell's speech at Jackson Hole he's going to have to be very sensitive to assert his own authority while not upsetting the markets or the President t oo much." The Federal Reserve minutes released Wednesday showed policymakers were deeply divided over whether to cut rates in July.

But they were united in wanting to signal they were not on a preset path to more cuts that would support economic growth.

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