LONDON: Stock markets largely stabilized on Tuesday as oil prices fell on easing geopolitical concerns surrounding major crude producers Iran and Russia.
French President Emmanuel Macron said he had convinced Russia’s Vladimir Putin not to escalate the crisis around Ukraine, ahead of talks in Kiev aimed at defusing fears of an invasion from Moscow.
Elsewhere, talks to revive a deal with Iran over its disputed nuclear program were due to resume on Tuesday after Washington and Tehran signaled their willingness to strike a deal as soon as possible.
Edward Moya, an analyst at trade group OANDA, said signs of progress in US-Iranian nuclear talks – which could see Tehran selling internationally again – were unlikely to have much long-term impact on the rise in oil prices towards 100 dollars per barrel.
“Energy traders have locked in some profits on optimism that the United States and Iran might be able to salvage a nuclear deal,” he said.
“The oil market still remains heavily in deficit and whatever price weakness is likely to be short-lived.”
European stocks see cautious rebound on miners and positive earnings
Soaring oil prices – Brent crude hit its highest level in more than seven years at $94 a barrel on Monday – saw BP return to big profits last year, the British energy giant said.
The expected turnaround – after huge losses in 2020 as the pandemic sent oil prices crashing – saw BP’s share price rise only modestly in midday trading in London on Tuesday.
The big story for the company in Asia was SoftBank’s announcement that the $40 billion sale of the Arm chip powerhouse to Nvidia had collapsed due to “significant regulatory challenges” over security issues. competetion.
Along with the news, the Japanese telecommunications company-turned-investment giant reported third-quarter net profit of $251 million.
In Europe, the EU unveiled a 43 billion euro plan to quadruple semiconductor supply in the region by 2030, hoping to limit the bloc’s dependence on Asia for a key component used in electric cars and smartphones.
Stock markets in London and Paris were up while Frankfurt was down around noon as traders await key US inflation data on Thursday which is expected to show more painful price rises in January after a four-decade high in December.
Investors are bracing for central banks to raise interest rates to tame inflation, a move that could weigh on the global economic recovery.
Key figures around 12:00 GMT
London – FTSE 100: UP 0.1% to 7,578.62 points
Frankfurt – DAX: 0.1% decline at 15,185.20
Paris – CAC 40: +0.2% to 7,021.25
EURO STOXX 50: DOWN 0.1% to 4,115.71
Tokyo – Nikkei 225: 0.1% higher at 27,284.52 (close)
Hong Kong – Hang Seng Index: DOWN 1.0% to 24,329.49 (close)
Shanghai – Composite: UP 0.7% to 3,452.63 (close)
New York – Dow: FLAT at 35,091.13 (closing)
Euro/dollar: DOWN to $1.1432 vs. $1.1440 Monday night
Pound/dollar: UP to $1.3562 from $1.3532
Euro/pound: DOWN to 84.30 pence vs. 84.51 pence
Dollar/yen: UP to 115.30 vs. 115.10 yen
North Sea Brent: 1.9% drop to $90.95 a barrel
West Texas Intermediate: 1.8% drop to $89.64 a barrel