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European Markets Slightly Higher, US Stocks Take a Long Weekend

European stocks push to the upside Monday, US stocks take a break. Market participants will be looking to Fed’s minutes on Wednesday.

SageFX - Jul, 05, 21

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Principal Points

  • European stocks push to the upside Monday, US stocks take a break
  • Market participants will be looking to Fed’s minutes on Wednesday

Shares in the European markets are trading marginally higher on Monday after they ended last week’s action moderately in negative territory. In today’s early trading hours, the region-wide Stoxx Europe 600 has added less than 0.1% to its performance.

European bourses finished Friday with mixed results as the pan-continental benchmark pushed higher by 1.18 points, or 0.26%, to 456.81. Technology stocks led the move up as they rose 1.1%. Bank stocks fell 1.3% pressured by growing concerns over the infectious Delta variant of the coronavirus. Despite the slowdown on Friday, the banking sector is the best eurozone performer year-to-date, having added over 25% since January. Travel and leisure stocks added 1.6% but ended the week lower by 1.4%.

The German DAX was the only winner among indexes tracking individual economies across Europe. Germany’s major stock average gained 46.28 points, or 0.30%, and closed at 15,650.09. The rest of the major benchmarks in Europe ended lower by 0.01% to 0.03%.

Europe’s broad-market index ended the week slightly lower as investors decreased their risk appetite on fears that the rapidly spreading new virus variant could dent the accelerating economic recovery.

Job Data Exceeds Expectations

Stocks on Wall Street are taking a break from trading today as the US celebrated Independence Day, July 4. Traders and Investors in the US could use the break to reassess where the market stands and how could the economic recovery unfold in the coming weeks and months.

Friday’s US jobs report helped push main US indexes to new highs. The June nonfarm payrolls data showed employers added 850,000 new jobs to the labor market. The report beat expectations for roughly 700,000 new positions and topped the previous report of 583,000 new jobs in May.

Wall Street’s broad S&P500 and the tech-focused Nasdaq Composite jumped higher, extending their record runs. Friday’s positive performance by the S&P500 sealed its seventh straight day of gains. Both indexes closed the day higher by roughly 0.80% each, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average advanced 0.44%.

For the week, the S&P500 added 1.7%, whereas the Nasdaq Composite climbed a little under 2%. For the same period, the Dow added 1.1%.

Meanwhile, in the cryptocurrency market, bitcoin ended the week relatively flat but pushed higher over the weekend. The world’s largest digital currency added nearly 8% Saturday through Sunday as market participants attempted to ignite some buying momentum. On Sunday, bitcoin reached $35,600 per token. For the same period, the Ethereum token added a little under 14% and reached a three-week high of $2,370.

Gold advanced over 1% on Friday propelled by the strong US jobs report. The precious metal shot to a three-week high of $1,794 per troy ounce. Friday’s gains built on a two-day winning streak which increased gold’s price by 2.4%. For the week, however, gold was barely changed, up around $5.

Heading into this week’s action, traders and investors will be monitoring the Fed minutes on Wednesday. The Federal Reserve will release a summary of the meeting in mid-June when Fed policymakers announced they expect at least two rate hikes by 2023.