Sun, Jul 24, 2005 - Page 10 News List

European investors take stock of London bomb scares

AFP , LONDON

European exchanges ended the week with mixed performances Friday as investors took stock of bomb attack attempts in London and a revaluation of the yuan, dealers said.

The London FTSE 100 index rose 0.39 percent to 5,241.8 points and the Frankfurt DAX 30 gained 0.15 percent to 4,836.90 points, while in Paris the CAC 40 eased 0.23 percent to 4,415.52.

The DJ Euro STOXX 50 index of leading eurozone shares nudged down 0.21 percent to 3,292.92 points. The euro stood at US$1.2081.

As European markets closed, the Dow Jones Industrial Average had dipped 0.22 percent in New York, and the tech-oriented NASDAQ Composite was off 0.50 percent.

In Asia, Tokyo's benchmark NIKKEI-225 index lost 0.78 percent to 11,695.05 points earlier in the day on concern among automakers and other exporters at the rise in the yen triggered by China's revaluation of the yuan, dealers said.

Hong Kong's key Hang Seng Index closed up 1.14 percent at 14,786.46 points on hopes of increased fund inflows Kong owing to the revaluation and a decision to no longer peg the yuan to the US dollar.

The Chinese government dropped its yuan-dollar peg in favor of one versus a basket of currencies and immediately raised the currency's value by two percent.

Investors focused on the fact that the currency policy change in the long run would help the US improve its trade balance with China by making Chinese imports more expensive.

In London, investors remained calm despite the capital being hit on Thursday by four would-be suicide attackers.

"The FTSE 100 opened steady in early trade this morning ... but traders said the underlying tone was steady, shrugging off yesterdays attacks," Sucden analysts said.

That attitude prevailed despite a report that police had shot and killed a man on Friday in an Underground train.

In Amsterdam, the AEX index shed 0.41 percent to 394.30 points, the Swiss SMI was flat at 6,492.52, in Milan the SP/MIB added 0.25 percent to 33,559, in Madrid the IBEX-35 was unchanged at 10.018.8 and in Brussels the BEL-20 closed 0.50 percent lower at 3,186.

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