Euro slips with European stocks after Macron's expected win

A television news report shows France's president-elect Emmanuel Macron as the DAX index curve is displayed beyond inside the Frankfurt Stock Exchange in Frankfurt, Germany, on May 8, 2017. PHOTO: BLOOMBERG

DUBAI (BLOOMBERG) - Europe's common currency weakened and its stocks dropped on Monday (May 8) following a convincing defeat of populism in France's presidential election that was already priced in by investors. Crude fluctuated as Saudi Arabia and Russia signaled output cuts will be extended.

The euro fell 0.5 per cent to US$1.0945, after gaining as much as 0.2 per cent earlier. The currency has been after climbing for five of the past six days in the build-up to the election of Mr Emmanuel Macron as France's next president.

The Stoxx Europe 600 slipped 0.2 per cent at 10.36am in London, dragged down by miners.

Futures on the S&P 500 were down 0.2 per cent. The benchmark gauge climbed 0.6 per cent last week, closing Friday at an all-time high.

The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index advanced 0.2 per cent following four straight weeks of declines.

Mr Macron's decisive triumph over the anti-euro Marine Le Pen will strengthen the EU and deal a blow to the populist wave that has roiled Western democracies for the past year. But the scope for a relief rally was limited after market gains in the build-up to Sunday's vote. Global stocks are trading at the highest ever, and US equities also closed at a record last week after better-than-forecast data on American jobs.

"Damp squib would be an overstatement," Mr Kit Juckes, a global strategist at Societe Generale, wrote in a note about the euro's reaction. The common currency faces headwinds after moving further than bonds in recent days, and because data shows investors still shorting the euro, he said. "A period of choppy trading is likely for now, but we do still expect the euro to move higher in due course," he wrote.

With the hurdle determining France's new leader now cleared, investors are turning their focus to global growth and corporate earnings, after last week's robust American jobs report and Federal Reserve comments bolstered optimism in the US economy.

Earlier on Monday, Japan's Topix soared 2.3 per cent to the highest since December 2015 as investors played catch-up after a three-day holiday. South Korea's Kospi jumped 2.3 per cent to a fresh record ahead of Tuesday's election.

A selloff in China continued, with the Shanghai Composite Index dropping 0.8 per cent to the lowest level since October, despite data showing overseas shipments held up in April.

West Texas Intermediate crude oil fluctuated before retreating 0.3 per cent to US$46.09 a barrel.

Gold climbed 0.2 per cent to US$1,230.20 an ounce. The metal fell 3.2 per cent last week.

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