In European Equity Markets the pan-European Stoxx 600 closed up by around 0.25%, with most sectors and major bourses in positive territory. Norwegian telecoms firm Telenor fell toward the bottom of the index. Shares of the company fell nearly 4% after talks with Malaysia’s Axiata about a potential joint venture ended without a deal. Britain’s G4S jumped more than 6%. It comes after Sky News reported Brink’s — a U.S.-based cash handling giant — was plotting a bid to acquire its cash solution business.
In Currency Markets the U.S. dollar fell on Friday against a basket of currencies, holding above a one-week low as a mixed report on the U.S. jobs market in August reinforced the view of a slowing expansion and the possibility of more interest rate cuts from the Federal Reserve. The Japanese yen was up 0.18% versus the dollar and up 0.06% against the euro. The Australian dollar was up 0.53% at $0.6851, putting it on track for its first weekly increase since mid-July. The Chinese currency in the offshore market extended gains and was trading up 0.37% against the greenback at 7.1118 yuan.
In Commodities Markets oil prices fell on Friday as U.S.-China trade tensions continued to weigh on sentiment despite recent diplomatic progress. Brent crude was down 93 cents, or 1.53%, at $60.02 a barrel. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude was down $1.08, or 1.92%, at $55.22. Brent is still set to register its fourth consecutive weekly gain while U.S. crude is on track for a second weekly rise. Brent is still set to register its fourth consecutive weekly gain while U.S. crude is on track for a second weekly rise.
In US Equity Markets stocks were flat on Friday as underwhelming jobs data rounded off a week of mixed economic signals about the domestic economy, while a new stimulus plan from China helped ease some concerns around global growth. The communication services sector was the biggest drag among the 11 major S&P sectors, pulled lower by Facebook Inc, which fell 1.7% after several U.S. state attorneys general said they would investigate the social media giant on whether it stifled competition and put users at risk.
In Bond Markets Euro zone bond yields inched down on Friday but were set for big weekly increases as easing global risks and caution ahead of a key ECB meeting curbed demand for fixed income. Germany’s 10-year bond yield fell 4 bps to -0.61% after jumping 8.5 basis points on Thursday in its biggest one-day rise since June 2018. It is up 8 bps this week – set for one of its biggest weekly jumps of the year.