European Equities Close Higher as ECB Eases Rate to 0.50%

By Investors Hub

European stocks have moved mostly higher on Thursday as the European Central Bank kicked off another wave of monetary easing.

The ECB lowered its main deposit rate by 10 basis points to 0.50 percent and announced plans to restart its quantitative easing program by purchasing assets at a pace of 20 billion euros per month beginning November 1st.

The central bank said it expects to keep interest rates at their present or lower levels until it has seen a sufficient increase in the inflation outlook.

The asset purchase program is expected to run for as long as necessary to reinforce the accommodative impact of the ECB?s policy rates.

U.S. President Donald Trump also announced a short delay to scheduled tariff hikes on billions of fodllar worth of Chinese goods after China decided to exempt some U.S. anti-cancer drugs and other goods from its tariffs.

While the U.K.?s FTSE 100 Index has inched up by 0.1 percent, the German DAX Index and the French CAC 40 Index are up by 0.6 percent and 0.7 percent, respectively.

Anheuser-Busch InBev has rallied after company said it is continuing to explore an initial public offering in Hong Kong of its Asia Pacific unit, Budweiser Brewing Company APAC.

Inkjet printer components specialist XAAR has also surged higher after it agreed to sell 20 percent of its holding in Xaar 3D to U.S. company Stratasys for $10 million.

Miners Anglo American, Antofagasta and Glencore have climbed on hopes of a breakthrough in negotiations between the world’s two largest economies.

Tobacco giant BAT has also shown a notable move to the upside on news it plans to lay off 2,300 employees globally by January.

Morrisons has also jumped on the day after the grocer said it had seen “robust progress” in sales and profit in its first half.

On the other hand, German specialty chemicals maker Wacker Chemie is moving lower after it acquired a stake in Nexeon, a U.K. headquartered battery material and licensing company.

In economic news, Eurozone industrial production continued to decline in July, albeit at a slower pace compared to the previous month, preliminary figures from Eurostat showed.

Industrial production dropped 2 percent year-on-year in July following a 2.4 percent slump in June, which was revised from 2.6 percent. Economists had forecast a 1.3 percent decrease.

Dipo Olowookere is a journalist based in Nigeria that has passion for reporting business news stories. At his leisure time, he watches football and supports 3SC of Ibadan. Mr Olowookere can be reached via dipo.olowookere@businesspost.ng

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