On Thursday, European stock markets experienced a slight increase, boosted by robust German industrial production growth.
The DAX index in Germany traded 0.1% higher, France’s CAC 40 climbed 0.2%, and the UK’s FTSE 100 rose 0.5% at 03:45 ET (07:45 GMT).
The positive momentum was attributed to Germany’s industrial production growth of 2.0% in February, which exceeded expectations of 0.1%. In Asia, China’s services activity expanded in March at its quickest pace in over two years, according to the Caixin/S&P Global services purchasing managers’ index, supported by a post-COVID recovery.
However, risk sentiment remained fragile as investors worried about a global economic slowdown. The trading range in Europe was predicted to be tight ahead of the Good Friday holiday, and the release of the US’s monthly nonfarm payrolls data.
Concerns persisted that a cooling US economy could lead the rest of the world into recession, limiting any gains on Thursday. Corporate news included a positive announcement from Shell, stating that it expects higher liquefied natural gas output in Q1 2023 after outages at its Australian plants last year.
Despite a fall in US crude inventories and the unexpected OPEC+ output cut, oil prices fell Thursday due to weak US data that raised fears about a potential recession in the world’s largest energy consumer. However, both benchmarks have gained more than 6% this week. Finally, gold futures fell 0.1%, while the EUR/USD traded 0.1% higher at 1.0911.