(Paris) World stock markets hesitated on Thursday, scrutinizing any new information on the situation in Ukraine, while oil and gas prices fell a little after crossing new thresholds earlier.
After a start to the session without much movement, the European markets sank around 3:20 p.m. GMT. London lost 1.49%, Frankfurt 1.31%, Paris 0.67% and Milan 0.78%.
Wall Street, for its part, opened higher: the Dow Jones gained 0.32%, the broader S&P 500 index advanced by 0.11%. But the NASDAQ turned red (-0.58%)
On the eighth day of the invasion of Ukraine, Russian forces, having captured their first major city, intensified their shelling of other cities, including the strategic port of Mariupol.
Vladimir Putin told President Emmanuel Macron of “his very great determination” to continue his offensive, according to the Élysée, and his goal would be “to take control” of the whole country.
The new talks between Russia and Ukraine, which began shortly before 3 p.m. GMT, nevertheless contributed to calming the volatility of the stock markets.
Oil prices were easing after climbing to levels not seen in several years. Thursday morning the barrel of American WTI exceeded 115 dollars, unseen since 2008, while the barrel of Brent was close to 120 dollars.
On the bond market, rates stabilized, the yield on 10-year US debt stood at 1.868%.
“This could mean that the ‘fear trading’ movement is coming to an end, at least in the short term,” said ActivTrades analyst Pierre Veyret.
Germany expects Western sanctions against Russia to have “significant repercussions” on its own economy.
Slight lull in commodities
The price of a barrel of Brent from the North Sea for May delivery took 1.41% to 114.49 dollars a barrel, the American WTI for April maturing climbed 0.80% to 111.47 dollars around 3:15 p.m. in London (10 3:15 p.m. EST), far from their morning peak.
Natural gas in Europe was stable (+0.96% to 167 euros per megawatt hour) on the Dutch European market, which is a benchmark, after breaking a new record at nearly 200 euros around 8:30 a.m. GMT.
Companies specializing in raw materials remained on the rise, such as Glencore (+6.24%) or Anglo American (+3.64%) in London, but others slowed down, such as Cleveland Cliffs (+2, 58%), ArcelorMittal (+1.71%), Antofagasta (+0.19%). Technip Energies, which reassured the market about its exposure to Russia, soared 14%.
Lufthansa and Volkswagen still penalized by Russia
The two largest car groups in the world, Toyota (+0.42%) and Volkswagen (-0.81%), announced Thursday the suspension of their production in Russia, due to the repercussions of the war in Ukraine.
The German airline Lufthansa, which insisted during the presentation of its results on the fact that the war in Ukraine was a source of “great uncertainty”, fell by 5.69%.
Societe Generale bank (+0.75%) assured to be able to resist a possible loss of control of its Russian subsidiary Rosbank, which represents 2.8% of its activity. Its price evolved below that of its competitors on the Parisian market BNP Paribas (+3.37%) and Crédit Agricole (+1.73%).
Abysmal loss at Tim
The title of the Italian operator Telecom Italia (Tim) plunged 12.19% to 0.30 euro on the Milan Stock Exchange, the day after the publication of its 2021 results which showed an abysmal loss. The board of directors of TIM has also approved the split between the fixed telephony network and the service activities.
On the currency side
The euro remained weak against the dollar, at $1.1080 (-0.36%). It also touched Thursday against the pound, its lowest since June 2016 and the Brexit vote, at 82.75 pence.
The Russian currency again lost 4.5% against the dollar.
Bitcoin lost some ground (-1.83%) at $43,280.