Feb 27, 2017

Global markets mixed ahead of Trump speech

European stocks gained Monday while Asian markets fell as investors looked ahead to U.S. President Donald Trump's speech to Congress this week for details of promised tax cuts and infrastructure spending.

KEEPING SCORE: London's FTSE-100 advanced 0.4 percent to 7,274.60 and Germany's DAX gained 0.1 percent to 11,817.81. France's CAC-40 rose 0.1 percent to 4,850.79. On Friday, the DAX lost 1.2 percent while the CAC 40 slumped 0.9 percent and the FTSE 100 shed 0.4 percent. On Wall Street, the futures for the Dow Jones industrial average and Standard & Poor's 500 index rose 0.2 percent.

WALL STREET: The Dow Jones industrial average extended its winning streak to an 11th day on Friday despite investor unease about uncertainty over Trump's pledge to cut taxes. Investors bought utility and phone company stocks, which pay large dividends, while energy companies declined. The Dow ended up just under 0.1 percent at 20,821.76. The Standard & Poor's 500 index rose 0.1 percent to 2,367.34. The Nasdaq composite rose 0.2 percent to 5,845.31.

TRUMP WATCH: Investors looked ahead to Trump's speech Tuesday to a joint session of Congress for details of how he plans to carry out promises to cut taxes and step up infrastructure spending. U.S. stocks have been buoyed by Trump's promise of pro-business changes but investor unease over their size and speed is growing. Analysts say less money is flowing into "Trump trades" that would benefit from the changes.

ANALYST'S TAKE: "Doubts continue to build on whether Trump will carry out his promise on infrastructure investment" and the timing of possible tax cuts is slow, Mizuho Bank said in a report. "Given the diminished expectations, we are hopeful that Trump, with the help of his speechwriters, could imbue optimism back into markets over his proposed tax reforms," the bank said. "Particularly, we will watch for any information for the magnitude of tax cuts under discussion, and also gauge whether Trump can court political support for his more controversial measures, including border taxes."


The Washington Post
By Joe McDonald | AP