- European stocks fell on Wednesday after eurozone ministers failed to reach an agreement on how best to weather the coronavirus storm.
- Japan’s Nikkei climbed after the government announced a nearly $1 trillion stimulus package.
- Britain’s FTSE 100 fell into the red after supermarket titan Tesco warned it could suffer $1 billion in costs related to the outbreak.
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European stocks fell on Wednesday after the continent’s ministers failed to settle on a response to the economic impact caused by the novel coronavirus despite 16 hours of talks.
“We came close to a deal but we are not there yet,” said the Eurogroup chairman, Mario Centeno, after the discussions. The pandemic threat continues to loom large: France became the fourth country to report a coronavirus death toll north of 10,000, and the number of deaths rose again in Spain.
Analysts at Rabobank said in a note that inevitably there has been “an increase in finger-pointing from politicians this week as they take a step back from their initial panic reactions.”
They added that the oil market is finding its feet ahead of a Saudi Arabia-Russia deal on output cuts at Thursday’s virtual meeting of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries.
US stock futures inched higher, a day after investors reacted positively to signs that lockdowns are effective in slowing the spread of the virus.
Japan’s benchmark Nikkei index gained ground after authorities confirmed plans to support $240 billion in interest-free loans as part of a nearly $1 trillion economic stimulus.
Britain’s FTSE 100 slipped into the red after supermarket titan Tesco announced that it expected to stomach $1.1 billion in coronavirus costs. The news sent its shares down 7% in morning trading.
Here’s the market roundup as of 11:22 a.m. in London (6:22 a.m. ET):
- European equities fell, with Germany’s DAX down 1%, Britain’s FTSE 100 down 1.5%, and the Euro Stoxx 50 down 1.5%.
- Asian indexes were mixed with China’s Shanghai Composite down 0.2%, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng down 1.2%, and Japan’s Nikkei up 2.1%.
- US stocks are set to open slightly higher. Futures underlying the Dow Jones Industrial Average, the S&P 500, and the Nasdaq rose as much as 0.2%.
- Oil prices climbed, with West Texas Intermediate up 3.6% at $24.50, and Brent crude up 0.7% at $32.10.
- The benchmark 10-year Treasury yield rose to about 0.73%.
- Gold rose 0.2% to $1,686.
- Bitcoin fell about 1.5% to roughly $7,320.