LONDON (ShareCast) - - EU expected to reach agreement on a reduced budget
- Banks deposited 152.3bn euros overnight at ECB
Dax (Xetra: ^GDAXI - news) -30: 0.24%
FTSE Mibtel 30: 0.67%
Ibex 35: 0.55%
Stoxx 600: 0.50%
European stocks have begun the session modestly higher, following the release of stronger than expected Chinese macroeconomic figures overnight and ahead of the conclusion of the EU summit today.
According to the latest reports EU leaders are expected to agree on a reduction to spending in the EU's next long-term budget covering the years from 2014 to 2020. The new spending commitments are expected to come down to €960bn from the proposal originally tabled which called for outlays of €1.047tn, versus the current budget's €994bn of assigned resources.
That as traders watch to see if equity benchmarks will work off current over-sold readings by means of a consolidation or whether a correction is in the cards.
Paris could take a stake in Peugeot (Paris: FR0000121501 - news)
PSA Peugeot Citroen (Other OTC: PEUGY - news) has cut the book value of its plants and other automotive assets by 2% through a €4.13bn write-down which. Paris is examining the possibility of taking a stake in the manufacturer, daily Liberation reported.
Telecom Italia (Milan: TIT.MI - news) is in talks with its banks over a €3bn loan deal, banking sources told Reuters on Thursday.
From a sector stand-point the best performers today are: Banks (1.39%), Automobiles&Parts (1.28%) and Insurance (0.72%).
Mixed economic figures
Germany's trade surplus fell to €12bn in December, after a reading of €16.9bn in the month before (Consensus: €17.5bn).
Italian industrial production rose by 0.4% month-on-month in December (Consensus: 0.3%), after a fall of 1.1% in the month before.
The French central bank's business sentiment indicator for the month of January improved to a reading of 95 points after 94 in the month before.
Dutch industrial production grew by 2.9% month-on-month in December (Consensus: 0.0%).
Slight gains in other asset classes
The euro/dollar is now edging higher by 0.14% to 1.3415.
Front month Brent crude futures are again moving higher, by 0.348 dollars to the 117.65 dollar level on the ICE.