Monday, October 15, 2018

© Reuters.  Frankfurt Stock Exchange© Reuters. Frankfurt Stock Exchange – European markets slipped lower on Tuesday, as investors became more cautious ahead of the Federal Reserve’s highly-anticipated policy meeting this week, even as investors’ confidence remained globally healthy.

The EURO STOXX 50 edged down 0.15%, France’s CAC 40 eased 0.11%, while Germany’s DAX 30 slipped 0.22% by 03:40 a.m. ET (07:40 GMT).

The Fed is widely expected to leave interest rates unchanged this week. However the U.S. central bank could give indications on when it plans to begin unwinding its balance sheet, as well as on any future interest rate decisions.

Meanwhile, concerns over tensions between the U.S. and North Korea remained subdued, although they were susceptible to pick up at any moment.

U.S. President Donald Trump was set to address the United Nations General Assembly for the first time on Tuesday and Pyongyang was widely expected to be on the agenda.

The White House said in a statement that President Trump plans to call for international action to confront North Korea and Iran, which he will portray as twin threats to global security.

Financial stocks were mixed, as French lenders BNP Paribas (PA:BNPP) added 0.17% and Societe Generale (PA:SOGN) slid 0.31%, while Germany’s Deutsche Bank (DE:DBKGn) edged up 0.12% and Commerzbank (DE:CBKG) declined 0.32%.

Among peripheral lenders, Intesa Sanpaolo (MI:ISP) dipped 0.01% and Unicredit (MI:CRDI) retreated 0.34% in Italy, while Spanish banks BBVA (MC:BBVA) and Banco Santander (MC:SAN) gained 0.08% and 0.14% respectively.

Elsewhere, German media company Prosiebensat 1 Media AG (DE:PSMGn) saw shares climb 0.66%, recovering from news on Monday that its video-on-demand service maxdome will not be profitable this year, contradicting earlier expectations.

In London, FTSE 100 dipped 0.05%, weighed by Paddy Power Betfair PLC (LON:PPB), whose shares plummeted 1.61% after the betting company was forced to apologize for allowing customers to bet on a dead former footballer becoming a manager.

The group briefly advertised odds of 66-1 on Ugo Ehiogu taking charge of Birmingham City, following the departure of manager Harry Redknapp over the weekend. Ehiogu died on April 20.

Coca Cola HBC AG (LON:CCH) added to losses, with shares down 1.44%. The bottling company made headlines last week when it announced that Chief Executive Dimitris Lois will be taking a temporary leave of absence.

Mining stocks were also broadly lower on the commodity-heavy index. Shares in Glencore (LON:GLEN) slipped 0.20% and Anglo American (LON:AAL) declined 0.69%, while rival company Antofagasta (LON:ANTO) tumled 1.05%.

Meanwhile, financial stocks were mostly higher as the Royal Bank of Scotland (LON:RBS) rose 0.20% and Lloyds Banking (LON:LLOY) gained 0.73%, while HSBC Holdings (LON:HSBA) rallied 0.97%. Barclays (LON:BARC) underperformed however, with shares sliding 0.35%.

Investors were also still digesting comments by Bank of England Governor Mark Carney saying that any pending interest rate rises over the coming months would be limited and gradual.

In the U.S., equity markets pointed to a steady open. The Dow Jones Industrial Average futures pointed to a 0.04% uptick, S&P 500 futures signaled a 0.01% dip, while the Nasdaq 100 futures indicated a 0.06% slip.

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