European equity markets extended gains in today’s trading session with the CAC, DAX, IBEX and London equity benchmark indices increasing between 0.20% and 0.65%. In the US, the Dow Jones index slid slightly lower heading towards 17,950 as investors remained on-standby due to the absence of key US economic indicators.
On the macroeconomic front, the German ZEW survey regarding economic sentiment was mixed after showing that the assessment of Germany’s current situation surged to 70.2 in April compared to 55.1 in March while market expectations dropped to 53.3 in April from 54.8 in March, missing analysts’ expectations of 55.3. It seems that the ongoing uncertainty in Greece continues to weigh on market sentiment across the other European countries. The euro rebounded from earlier losses and held flat, hovering around 1.0740 against the USD as investors await any clarification regarding the ongoing debt issues in Greece.
In London, energy stocks came under renewed pressure as Brent front month futures gave back yesterday’s gains and slid lower towards $63 per barrel. On the other hand, WTI futures edged higher holding above $56.50 per barrel. Royal Dutch Shell and BP retreated 0.65% and 0.80%, respectively, at the time of writing. After the close of today’s trading session, the release of the weekly API oil inventories report could provide further signs regarding the crude oil inventories.
Precious metal prices edged higher today with gold climbing towards the key level of $1,200/ounce. Platinum and palladium extended gains towards $1150 and $780, respectively, while silver missed the uptrend and remained in negative territory after trading below $16.