After setting a new all-time high this morning at 7977 points (+0.3%), the Paris stock market ended the last session of February with a limited decline of 0.34% to 7927 points, penalized in particular by Veolia (-3.5%) and Pernod Ricard (-1.4%).

The long-awaited PCE price inflation index for the US came in at +2.4% annualized in January, down 0.2 points on December 2023, in line with Jefferies' forecast.

Still on the US statistics front, household consumption expenditure rose by 0.2% last month compared with December in the US, on income growth of 1% month-on-month.

Finally, the US Labor Department announced +13,000 new jobless claims in the US the week of February 19, to 215,000.

Note that the four-week moving average - more representative of the underlying trend - came out at 212,500 for the same week, down by 3,000 on the previous week's revised average.

T-Bonds improved slightly (-4Pts to 4.235%) and Bunds and OATs lined up with -4 and -5Pts respectively.... which wipes out the previous day's poor session.

According to the FedWatch barometer, the market now rules out any reduction in the cost of money in March and May, but the scenario of a rate cut in June is considered credible by 51% of traders.

On the Old Continent, the first monthly inflation figures for Germany, published at 2:00 p.m., point to a continued fall in prices to levels not seen since June 2021.

The inflation rate in Germany, measured as the change in the consumer price index (CPI) compared with the same month of the previous year, is expected to stand at +2.5% in February 2024, its lowest level since June 2021 (+2.4%).

In France, gross domestic product (GDP) in volume terms for the 4th quarter is revised slightly upwards to +0.1% (compared with the stagnation announced in the first estimate), according to detailed data from Insee (but salaried employment is down -0.1%).

In addition, according to Insee's provisional end-of-month estimate, consumer prices in France rose by 2.9% year-on-year in February 2024, a slight slowdown after +3.1% in January.

Lastly, in January 2024, French household consumption expenditure on goods fell by 0.3% in volume terms over one month, following a 0.3% increase in December 2023, according to Insee's CVS-CJO data.

On the currency markets, the euro retreated by -0.3% to $1.081.

Brent crude is up by almost 0.5%, touching the resistance level of $83.6 a barrel.

In French corporate news, Nexity is down 20% on the SBF 120 following the publication of results divided by 10 in Q4 2023, while Euroapi is down 43% (SBF 120).

Airbus Helicopters reports that it has signed a framework agreement with Bristow Group for up to fifteen H135 helicopters (five firm orders and 10 options), with deliveries scheduled to begin in October 2024.

Arkema reports net current earnings of €8.75 per share for 2023 (versus €15.75 in 2022) and EBITDA down 28.9% to €1.5 billion, representing a margin of 15.8% (versus 18.3% in 2022) in a context of weak demand.
Air France-KLM publishes net income of 0.93 billion euros for 2023, 'enabling a return to positive equity at 0.5 billion for the first time since 2019', with an operating margin at 5.7%, an improvement of 1.2 points.

For 2023, Technip Energies reports 'adjusted IFRS' EPS down 9% to 1.63 euros and a recurring EBIT margin up 0.4 points to 7.4%, on sales down more than 6% to 6.01 billion euros.

Veolia reports that last year it generated sales of 45.35 billion euros, up 9% organically and 4.4% excluding the effect of higher energy prices. Ebitda came to 6.54 billion euros, representing organic growth of 7.8%, above the +5% to +7% target range set by the company.

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