FRANKFURT AM MAIN, HESSEN, GERMANYSEPTEMBER 10, 2020SOURCE: EBSRESTRICTIONS: NO RESALE
1. SOUNDBITE 1 - Christine Lagarde, ECB chief (female, English, 22 sec): "We very much hope that after the Brexit that was decided and became effective as of January 1st, 2020 the outcome of the negotiations not withstanding the negiotiation posturing and what has been observed in the last few days will lead to a positive outcome."
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newseriesMarkets, euro rise as ECB sees virus downturn less severe than feared ATTENTION - REFILES fixing typo in first graf UPDATES with ECB and US open ///London, Sept 10, 2020 (AFP) - Stock markets rose along with a buoyant euro Thursday after ECB head Christine Lagarde forecast the eurozone's coronavirus downturn would be less severe than feared.Lagarde acknowledged a recent spike in coronavirus cases was causing "headwinds" for the recovery whose pace remained uncertain, but added data pointed to a "strong rebound" in the third quarter.According to the ECB's latest forecasts, the eurozone economy is likely to shrink by 8.0 percent this year, compared with an earlier projection of -8.7 percentLagarde told reporters the rise of the euro had been discussed -- though it was absent from the policy statement -- and was "something to be monitored carefully."Lagarde said the European Central Bank was not targeting a euro level "and I will not comment on any level -- we are monitoring carefully the impact of our currency on our medium-term inflation level."Her comments did not stop the single currency hitting $1.19 against the US dollar, close to the September 1 two-year high of $1.20, while it rose still further against drooping sterling to 91.93 pence"The absence of any mention of the exchange rate in the policy statement confirms our view that the ECB is not too worried about the currency at present," said Andrew Kenningham, Chief Europe Economist for Capital Economics.Investors are meanwhile also keeping an eye on post-Brexit trade talks between Britain and the European Union after Boris Johnson's government introduced legislation that intentionally breaches its obligations regarding Northern Ireland in the withdrawal treaty.The move has fanned fears of no trade agreement, dealing a double-whammy to a British economy that has been ravaged by virus lockdowns.Such concerns have sent the pound tumbling this week, though the currency was on a steadier footing Thursday.In the US meanwhile, stocks opened higher with share prices of technology firms enjoying a recovery led by Apple, Microsoft and Tesla.About 20 minutes into trading, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 0.5 percent at 28,090.53.The broad-based S&P 500 gained 0.4 percent to 3,413.74, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index advanced 0.7 percent to 11,217.32.The gains extending the prior session's positive thrust followed mixed US labor data and continued dim prospects for additional stimulus spending from Washington.Elsewhere, hopes for a coronavirus vaccine won a boost following a report in the Financial Times that the trial being conducted by AstraZeneca and the University of Oxford could resume early next week, ending a pause after a volunteer developed an unexplained illness.The drug is a frontrunner in the global race for a vaccine.
- Key figures around 1400 GMT -
New York - Dow: UP 0.5 percent at 28,090.53 London - FTSE 100: UP 1.6 percent at 6,014.50 points Frankfurt - DAX 30: UP 0.3 percent at 13,270.50 Paris - CAC 40: UP 0.1 percent at 5,049.55EURO STOXX 50: UP 0.1 percent at 3,327.79 Tokyo - Nikkei 225: UP 0.9 percent at 23,235.47 (close)Hong Kong - Hang Seng: DOWN 0.6 percent at 24,313.54 (close)Shanghai - Composite: DOWN 0.6 percent at 3,234.82 (close)Pound/dollar: DOWN at $1.2939 from $1.3000 at 2040 GMTEuro/pound: UP at 91.93 pence from 90.80 penceEuro/dollar: UP at $1.1894 from $1.1805Dollar/yen: DOWN at 106.09 yen from 106.12 yen West Texas Intermediate: DOWN 0.7 percent at $37.78 per barrelBrent North Sea crude: DOWN 0.6 percent at $40.56 per barreldan-bcp/rfj/cdw/pvh