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Title: European shares edge up ahead of ECB meeting

Apr 14, 2022 04:16AM ET

By: AnalysisWatch

Stock markets posted modest gains Thursday ahead of a European Central Bank meeting that could announce tighter policy, while U.S. Treasury yields slipped and the dollar declined on hopes that inflation may peak soon.

Traders awaited a meeting of the European Central Bank for possible clues on a clearer timetable for scaling back its extraordinary stimulus measures, as worries about record-high inflation trumped concerns about a war-induced recession.

Ahead of the ECB decision, expected at 09:45 AM ET, the broader Euro STOXX 600 rose 0.1%, with French stocks up 0.4% and German shares up 0.2%.

A number of central banks around the world have tightened policies as they seek to curb spiraling inflation. On Thursday, the Bank of Korea surprised markets by raising interest rates, and the Monetary Authority of Singapore also tightened policy.

Still, market participants were divided on how aggressive the ECB would be. Some predicted it would signal tighter policy without necessarily taking hard measures.

The MSCI World Equity Index, which tracks stocks from 50 countries, rose 0.3%, while Wall Street futures were flat.

Borrowing costs in the euro area's battered government bond markets rose again ahead of the ECB meeting. The yield on 10-year German bonds rose 2 basis points to 0.79% in early trading, near its highest level since July 2015, reached earlier this week.

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan was up 0.4% earlier.

Due to the long Easter weekend, major European, American, and Asian markets are closed on Friday.

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