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European stocks mixed; U.S. debt talks, Ryanair results in focus

Published 05/22/2023, 02:12 AM
Updated 05/22/2023, 03:32 AM
© Reuters.

Investing.com - European stock markets traded in a mixed fashion Monday, with investors cautious as negotiations surrounding the potential raising of the U.S. debt ceiling continue.

At 03:20 ET (07:20 GMT), the DAX futures contract in Germany traded 0.3% lower, CAC 40 futures in France dropped 0.2%, while the FTSE 100 futures contract in the U.K. dropped 0.1%.

Europe's macro calendar is fairly light today, with May eurozone consumer confidence data and speeches from European Central Bank officials Luis de Guindos and Philip Lane the main highlights.

With this in mind, activity is likely to be limited as investors await more news from Washington with negotiations to avoid a U.S. default, which would have a disastrous impact on the global economy, set to continue.

President Joe Biden is due to meet House Republican Speaker Kevin McCarthy later Monday in an attempt to get discussions back on track after Republican negotiators unexpectedly walked out of debt ceiling talks on Friday.

U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen repeated over the weekend that June 1 remains a "hard deadline" for raising the federal debt limit, and hard choices would have to be made if Congress failed to raise the $31.4 trillion debt ceiling before this date.

Some positive news emerged from the G7 summit in Japan over the weekend, as Biden said he expects relations between the U.S. and Beijing to improve “very shortly.” 

This could see foreign investors returning to China, helping a major export market as it struggles with a post-COVID economic rebound. 

Back in Europe, data showed that foreign investment in Germany remained stable in 2022 despite the difficult economic situation, according to the country's economic development agency, Germany Trade & Invest, Monday.

In corporate news, Ryanair (IR:RYA) posted a near-record profit in the year to end-March, and the Irish airline, Europe's largest by passenger numbers, said it was cautiously optimistic that profits would rise modestly in the next 12 months, with summer demand notably robust.

NatWest Group (LON:NWG) stock rose 0.7% after the British state-backed bank announced plans to buy £1.3 billion (£1 = $1.2431) worth of its shares back, reducing the government's stake to 38.69% from around 41.4%, as it edges closer towards private ownership 15 years after it was bailed out in the global financial crisis.

Oil prices retreated Monday, handing back some of last week’s gains amid caution over the ongoing U.S. debt ceiling talks.

By 03:20 ET, U.S. crude futures traded 0.7% lower at $71.19 a barrel, while the Brent contract dropped 0.7% to $75.05. 

Both contracts rose around 2% last week, ending four straight weeks of heavy declines on concerns of slowing growth in China, the world’s largest oil importer, as well as the potential economic repercussions of a U.S. default.

Additionally, gold futures fell 0.2% to $1,977.45/oz, while EUR/USD traded 0.1% lower at 1.0805.

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