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European stocks mostly declined over the course of the day. The FTSE and the DAX retreated from all-time highs set earlier in the session.
U.K.'s Nationwide House Price Index for February declined to the lowest in in 17 months in February from a previous reading of +0.3% by -0.1%. Year on year the index rose +5.7% compared to +6.8% last year.
France, Germany and the Eurozone reported Manufacturing PMIs. February data from France showed a decline from previous 47.7 to 47.6 below estimates of an unchanged reading. The German PMI rose to 51.1, beating estimates of on unchanged reading of 50.9. Manufacturing PMI for the Eurozone declined to 51.0 coming from a previous reading of 51.1 and 0.1 points below estimates.
The Unemployment Rate in the Eurozone declined to the lowest level since April 2012, Eurostat reported today. The number of people unemployed fell to a seasonally adjusted 11.2% in January from 11.3% in December (revised down from 11.4%). Analyst expected a reading of 11.4%. In December. Germany has the lowest Unemployment Rate with 4.7% followed by Austria with 4.8% whereas Greece and Spain have the highest.
Although data for Consumer Price Inflation came in higher-than-expected at -0.3% compared to estimates at -0.5% and a previous reading of -0.6% inflation remained in negative territory for a third consecutive month, preliminary data showed. Given the reading far below the targeted inflation rate of the ECB around 2%, concerns over deflation in the Eurozone persist. Low oil prices kept inflation low.
U.K Mortgage Approvals came in below expectations of 61 at 60.7. The Purchasing Manager Index Manufacturing improved from revised 53.1 (previous reading of 53) to 54.1 in February. Net Lending to Individuals rose from 2.2 billion to 2.4 billion. Analyst expected a rise to 2.6 billion.
The FTSE 100 index is currently trading +0.01% quoted at 6,947.39. Germany's DAX 30 added +0.10% trading at 11,413.23, close to its new all-time high. France's CAC 40 is currently trading at 4,924.40 points, -0.55%.
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