Europe midday: Iran nuclear deal boosts stocks|
European equities advanced, led by travel stocks, as oil prices fell after Iran agreed to limit its nuclear programme.
Iran has said it will curb some of its nuclear activities in exchange for an easing of international sanctions against the country.
The nation is home to the world's fourth-largest oil reserves but its exports have been affected by tough sanctions.
The White House said Iran will have to improve co-operation with United Nations monitors, commit to eliminate its stockpile of uranium enriched to 20% levels and stop advanced centrifuge installation under the proposed deal.
Under its pact with the UK, the US, Germany, France, Russia and China, Iran will not be allowed to increase its oil sales for six months but the deal will relieve tensions in the oil producing region of the Middle East.
The news saw Brent crude futures slip $1.759 to $109.130 per barrel and West Texas Intermediate futures drop $1.444 to $93.490, according to ICE data.
The decline in oil prices provided a boost to travel companies including Air France, International Consolidated Airlines and Thomas Cook.
ECB’s Coeure plays down deflation fears
European Central Bank (ECB) executive board member Benoit Coeure has said the monetary authority’s decision to cut interest rates from 0.50% to 0.25% was spurred by “slow motion” disinflation rather than concerns of deflation risks in the euro-area.
Inflation fell to 0.7% in October from 1.1% the previous month.
"We did not act because we see deflation risks materialising in the euro area," he said in a forum in Tokyo.
"Rather, we acted because we wanted to keep a sufficient safety margin above zero percent inflation."
UK mortgage approvals, US home sales
UK mortgage approvals unexpectedly declined to £42,808 in October from the prior month’s £43,182, according to the British Bankers’ Association.
Economists had pencilled in £45,000 worth of approvals. The data comes in contrast to recent reports claiming the UK was experiencing a housing boom.
“The bigger picture would indicate that this is merely a blip,” said IG.
“Tomorrow’s housing price index release will give more clues to the activity in the British housing sector. New mortgage approvals data due on Friday will also contribute to the boom/bubble debate.”
Later today US pending home sales figures will be in focus. Sales are expected to fall 1% year-on-year in October, compared to a 1.1% a month earlier.
Also out later will be a speech from Bundesbank President Jens Weidmann at Harvard University.
PSA Peugeot, Fresenius
PSA Peugeot Citroen advanced following reports that its Chief Executive Officer Philippe Varin intends to step down next year and will be replaced by former Renault SA Chief Operating Officer Carlos Tavares.
Fresenius Medical Care AG bounced higher after US regulators threw out a plan to cut Medicare payments next year.
Orange gained on rumours that France’s biggest phone company may announce a sale of its Dominican Republic unit to Altice as early as this week.
Banco Popolare SC and Unione di Banche Italiane SCPA slumped after Societe Generale SA reduced its 12-month price forecasts on the shares, saying Italian banks will need €44bn more in provisions for their bad loans.
The euro fell 0.30% to $1.3517.