European Markets Finish Mixed Ahead Of ECB Announcement

The European markets ended Wednesday’s session with mixed results. After struggling in early trade, the markets climbed around midday, ahead of the opening bell on Wall Street.

Traders remained in a cautious mood due to the tensions between North Korea and the United States. Investors are also looking forward to tomorrow’s policy decision from the European Central Bank.

Shares of insurance companies were under pressure Wednesday. Following the devastating flooding caused by Hurricane Harvey in Texas, residents in Florida are now bracing for Hurricane Irma.

The pan-European Stoxx Europe 600 index advanced 0.08 percent. The Euro Stoxx 50 index of eurozone blue chip stocks increased 0.38 percent, while the Stoxx Europe 50 index, which includes some major U.K. companies, added 0.26 percent.

The DAX of Germany climbed 0.75 percent and the CAC 40 of France rose 0.29 percent. The FTSE 100 of the U.K. declined 0.25 percent and the SIM of Switzerland finished lower by 0.11 percent.

In Frankfurt, Daimler rallied 3.12 percent on speculation of a change in its corporate structure. BMW increased 1.73 percent and Volkswagen added 1.43 percent. Renault advanced 3 percent and Peugeot climbed 1.78 percent in Paris.

In London, Barratt Developments tumbled 4.57 percent after the homebuilder provided a cautious outlook, saying it would “carefully” monitor Brexit’s impact on the housing market.

Similarly, Berkeley Group Holdings lost 2.53 percent after warning over the impact of Brexit uncertainty on London’s property market.

Royal Mail fell 0.70 percent after reports that the Communications Workers Union will vote on industrial action.

Software group Micro Focus soared 6.16 percent after posting improved third-quarter results for the newly-acquired software business of Hewlett Packard Enterprises.

Jyske Bank dropped 5.02 percent in Copenhagen after BRFholding reduced its stake in the lender.

German factory orders declined unexpectedly in July on weak domestic demand, figures from Destatis revealed Wednesday. Factory orders fell 0.7 percent month-on-month in July, in contrast to a revised 0.9 percent rise in June. This was the first fall in three months. Orders were forecast to climb 0.2 percent in July.

Germany’s construction sector logged a softer growth in August but remained strong in the context of historic survey data, IHS Markit reported Wednesday. The headline construction Purchasing Managers’ Index fell to 54.9 in August from 55.8 in July.

A report released by the Commerce…

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