Major European indices close lower despite the steady central bank policy decisions

  • Thursday, 21 September 2023 | 16:25 GMT
  • Swiss National Bank and Bank of England keep rates unchanged

The major European indices are closing the day lower with all but the UK FTSE 100 down over 1%. The final numbers are showing

  • German DAX -1.33%
  • Frances CAC -1.59%
  • UK’s FTSE 100 -0.69%
  • Spain’s Ibex -1.0%
  • Italy’s FTSE MIB -1.74%

Today, both the Bank of England and the Swiss National Bank announced that they have decided to maintain their current interest rates. The decision by the Bank of England was seen as a toss-up, with equal chances of either maintaining or changing rates, while analysts had anticipated a 25 basis point increase in rates from the Swiss National Bank.

As European traders consider their positions, the Japanese Yen (JPY) emerges as the strongest among the major currencies, while the Swiss Franc (CHF) is showing relative weakness. The US Dollar (USD) is exhibiting a mixed performance, gaining ground against the British Pound (GBP), Swiss Franc (CHF), Canadian Dollar (CAD), and Australian Dollar (AUD), but experiencing declines in value against the Euro (EUR), Japanese Yen (JPY), and New Zealand Dollar (NZD).

The strongest to weakest of the major currencies

Looking at other markets:

  • Crude oil is trading up $0.32 or 0.36% at $89.98
  • Gold is trading down $13.21 or -0.68% at $1917.57
  • Bitcoin is trading at $26,611

In the US stock market, major indices remain under pressure:

  • Dow industrial average -159 points or -0.46% at 34281
  • S&P -44.78 points or -1.01% at 4357.45
  • NASDAQ -160 points or -1.19% at 13309

In the US debt market, yields remain higher with the shorter end off their highest levels and trading nearer lows

  • 2-year yield 5.139%, +2.0 basis points
  • 5-year yield 4.610% +9.7 basis points
  • 10-year yield 4.473% +12.7 basis points
  • 30-year yield 4.552% +15.3 basis points

Problems in Washington on procedural rules vote for defense appropriations bill threatens a government shutdown as the McCarthy caucus in the House of Representatives is failing. Implications of a shutdown are not good.

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