After gains over the last 3 weeks, the major European indices are off to a modest declines today and for the week so far. The subdued activity occurred as investors anticipate the release of the Federal Reserve's recent meeting minutes, hoping to find indications that the central bank might be concluding its cycle of interest rate hikes.

Analysts and market participants have increasingly believed that the Fed's fight against inflation is nearing an end, despite official statements suggesting further rate hikes might still be considered.

In contrast, the European Central Bank (ECB) has been actively countering expectations of rate cuts, with ECB officials emphasizing that rates are likely to remain steady for several quarters. Lagarde said this morning:

  • Given the scale of our policy adjustment, we can now allow some time for them to unfold.

However, she did warn that:

  • This is not the time to start declaring victory.

The final numbers are showing

  • German DAX, -0.78 points or 0.00% at 15900.54. For the trading week, the index is down -0.12%
  • France CAC, -17.48 points or -0.24% at 7229.46. For the trading week, the index is down -0.06%
  • UK's FTSE 100, -14.37 points or -0.19% at 7481.98. For the trading week, the index is down -0.30%
  • Spain's Ibex is down -11.48 points or -0.12% at 9827.51. For the trading week, the index is up 0.68%
  • Italy's FTSE MIB tumbled -360.17 points or -1.22% at 29181.73

In other markets as London/European traders look toward the exits, US stocks are lower:

  • Dow Industrial Average -89.63 points or -0.26% at 35060.84
  • S&P index -14.80 points or -0.30% at 4532.85
  • NASDAQ index -108.11 points or -0.76% at 14176.28.

Microsoft shares are trading down $5.14 or -1.36% at $372.35 after closing at record levels yesterday. Nvidia shares are down $8.09 or -1.62% of $495.86. Nvidia will announce her earnings after the close. It's shares closed at record levels yesterday.

Lowe's and Best Buy announced earnings ahead of the open today. Each of their forward guidance was lower than expectations

  • Best Buy $-0.36 or -0.53% at $67.75
  • Lowe's $-5.63 or -2.76% at $198.75

US yields are lower:

  • 2-year yield 4.872% -3.9 basis points
  • 5 year yield 4.403% -3.8 basis points
  • 10-year yield 4.396% -2.5 basis points
  • 30-year yield 4.560% -1.4 basis points

Gold prices are up sharply but off their highest levels. The current price is up $23.75 or 1.20% at $2001.06. The high price reached $2007.54.

Crude oil is down $0.38 or -0.50% at $77.43

In the forex, the NZD is the strongest of the major currencies while the EUR is the weakest. The USD is lower with only a gain vs the EUR (up 0.13%).


The EURUSD is trading to a new session lows as I type, and in the process is breaking below the swing area low on the daily chart at 1.09255. The bear did extend above its 61.8% retracement of its 2023 trading range at 1.0959, but only by 5 pips before rotating back to the downside.