European Shares Poised For Firm Start

European stocks are likely to open higher on Monday as Italy, Spain and France all signaled tentative moves to open up their economies amid a continued slowdown in new virus cases.

Elsewhere, fatalities reported in the U.K. and New York were the lowest since the end of March.

As global death toll soared past 200,000, the World Health Organization has warned against “immunity passports” for recovered patients.

Globally, there are currently 29.94 lakh confirmed cases of coronavirus and 2.06 lakh deaths.

Asian markets inched higher along with U.S. stock futures as the Bank of Japan expanded monetary stimulus for the second straight month in response to the
growing economic devastation from the coronavirus pandemic.

The Federal Reserve and the European Central Bank will meet later in the week, with economists expecting no changes in official interest rates as the rate of new cases and deaths fall in Europe and the United States, the Covid-19 epicenters.

Gold prices eased on firmer equities while oil fell below $16 a barrel on concerns over swelling global crude stockpiles.

U.S. stocks rose sharply on Friday as some states prepared to reopen their economies and oil prices climbed on expectations the U.S. may shrink production to make up for diminished demand and storage capacity.

Offsetting disappointing durable goods orders and consumer sentiment data, President Donald Trump signed a $484 billion stimulus package that will replenish a fund for small-business lending and direct money to hospitals and efforts to ramp up U.S. testing capacity in the fight against Covid-19.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average climbed 1.1 percent, the S&P 500 rallied 1.4 percent and the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite jumped 1.7 percent.

European markets ended notably lower on Friday as an experimental drug to treat Covid-19 showed inconclusive results and EU leaders failed to reach an agreement over the structure of an economic recovery fund to tackle the impact of the virus pandemic.

The pan European Stoxx 600 shed 1.1 percent. The German DAX declined 1.7 percent, while France’s CAC 40 index and the U.K.’s FTSE 100 dropped around 1.3 percent.

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