This Day On The Street
Continue to site
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here

European Stocks Drift Lower Ahead of ECB Rates Meeting

LONDON ( The Deal) -- European stock indices drifted lower on Thursday while Asian stocks ended the day mixed as European Central Bank policy makers prepared to meet to set rates.

Most economists expect action from the ECB Thursday to boost lackluster eurozone growth and combat the risk of a prolonged period of deflation. But with benchmark rates already at 0.25% policy makers will have to dig deep into their toolbox for monetary solutions to supplement what is expected to be a small cut in that key rate. The ECB will announce its rate decision at 1.45 p.m. local time, which is 7:45 a.m. EDT.

In London the FTSE 100 was down 0.28% at 6,799.49. In Frankfurt the DAX slipped 0.15% to 9,991.57 and in Paris the CAC 40 little changed at 4,501.55.

Medical devices maker Smith & Nephew was the lead gainer on the FTSE 100 on news that it has attracted a second U.S. suitor, Medtronic (MDT - Get Report), of Minneapolis, after it reportedly spurned an offer from Stryker (SYK) last month. Medtronic is said to be considering making a bid and Britain's Takeover Panel may well tell the U.S. group to show its hand, after a 12% rise in Smith & Nephew's American depositary shares on Wednesday followed by the rise Thursday in London.

Logistics company Wincanton surged more than 9% after it posted an above-expected 20% increase in full-year underlying pretax profit to 25.6 million pounds ($42.9 million). The company said it's not paying a dividend so it can focus on cutting debt, which it managed to slash by 40% from a year earlier.

Home builder Bellway rose after it reported a 11% increase in the reservation rate for new homes and a strong order book. But ASOS, Britain's leading clothes-only online retailer, plunged more than 31% after warning on full-year margins following price promotions and as a strengthening of the pound hit international orders.

In Frankfurt, Henkel edged higher after agreeing to pay BC Partners 940 million euros ($1.3 billion) for French laundry products maker Spotless Group. The deal was Henkel's second this week after it agreed to buy haircare brands from buyout firm TSG Consumer Partners on Monday for 270 million euros.

In Paris, Remy Cointreau rose as it pledged to increase organic sales and operating profit in the current year after becoming one of several liquor makers and luxury goods companies to have been hit in the fiscal year just ended by a Chinese government clampdown on excessive consumption.

Remy Cointreau said its revenue declined 11% in the fiscal year ended March to 1.03 billion euros and operating profit fell 39% to 150.2 million euros.

In Hong Kong the Hang Seng declined 0.18% to 23,109.66. Oil producer CNOOC closed down 2.2%, reflecting a pan-Asian selloff of power companies.

In Tokyo the Nikkei 225 rose 0.08% to 15,079.37, led by drinks maker Asahi Group, which gained more than 5%.

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Action Alerts PLUS

Portfolio Manager Jim Cramer and Director of Research Jack Mohr reveal their investment tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Quant Ratings

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
Stocks Under $10

David Peltier uncovers low dollar stocks with serious upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
14-Days Free
Only $9.95
14-Days Free
Dividend Stock Advisor

David Peltier identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Trifecta Stocks

Every recommendation goes through 3 layers of intense scrutiny—quantitative, fundamental and technical analysis—to maximize profit potential and minimize risk.

Product Features:
  • Model Portfolio
  • Intra Day Trade alerts
  • Access to Quant Ratings
Real Money

More than 30 investing pros with skin in the game give you actionable insight and investment ideas.

Product Features:
  • Access to Jim Cramer's daily blog
  • Intraday commentary and news
  • Real-time trading forums
Only $49.95
14-Days Free
14-Days Free
MDT $79.21 -0.71%
AAPL $93.20 -1.70%
FB $116.88 0.13%
GOOG $693.03 0.29%
TSLA $246.80 -0.37%


Chart of I:DJI
DOW 17,740.91 -89.85 -0.50%
S&P 500 2,062.19 -13.62 -0.66%
NASDAQ 4,774.2780 -31.0130 -0.65%

Free Reports

Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs