Europe ends under pressure; ECB, BoE hold fire on interest rates

Stocks in Europe reversed earlier gains by Thursday’s close to finish lower, as investors digested fresh news out of the central banking sphere.

The pan-European STOXX 600 closed down 0.15 percent at 376.53, with the majority of sectors falling into negative territory. The U.K.’s FTSE 100 slipped 0.43 percent by the close, while France’s CAC 40 ended a touch lower, off 0.08 percent, and Germany’s DAX rose 0.19 percent.

Autos was Europe’s top performing sector Thursday, jumping 1.04 percent on the back of hopes that China and the U.S. might reach a compromise over trade. On Wednesday, sources familiar with these negotiations told CNBC that the States was in the early stages of proposing a new round of trade talks with China in the near future.

In Europe, the focus is on monetary policy with three meetings taking place during Thursday’s session. First off, the Bank of England (BoE) decided to hold fire on raising interest rates Thursday, with all rate-setters voting unanimously to hold rates at 0.75 percent, as expected.

In Frankfurt, the European Central Bank decided to kept its benchmark interest rates unchanged Thursday, which was widely expected. During the press conference, President Mario Draghi talked about the state of monetary policy, and reaffirmed his confidence in the economic state of the euro zone.

Source: CNBC

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