So there's no need for suspense: buyers are firmly back in the driver's seat, and the Paris Bourse is set to post its 4th consecutive all-time best close (yesterday's +0.00% also counts, as the closing score was a few tenths higher than Friday's).
The CAC40, which is now up by more than 0.4%, is settling above the 7,000Pts mark.800Pts, driven by Air Liquide (+8% and a new all-time high at 182.2E) and Carrefour (+3%).
The Euro-Stoxx50 could finish positive (new record possible at 4,766), while Wall Street remains well down (-0.6% for the S&P500 and -1.1% for the Nasdaq)... but has been trimming its losses since 4.45pm.

One of last week's highlights was the return of inflation concerns, and from this point of view, it's interesting to see that equity markets held up rather well", points out Danske Bank.

"With bond yields rising, it's not surprising to see value stocks outperforming and growth stocks underperforming", says the Danish bank.

In terms of figures, the construction sector rebounded by +0.8% sequentially and +1.9% year-on-year in the eurozone in December, after two consecutive months of contraction, according to Eurostat (the European Union's statistical office).
But analysts at Capital Economics say they expect a bout of weakness in the construction sector this year, after the highs reached last spring.
We expect construction to decline again in 2024, mainly as a result of Germany's poor performance", stresses the London-based economic research firm.

In the USA, the Conference Board's index of leading indicators showed a decline of -0.4% (22nd consecutive month of decline), but this was "not as bad" as the 0.5% contraction expected.
As a result, the Conference Board says it no longer anticipates a US recession this year, but warns that growth will slow to near-zero levels in the second and third quarters.

In China, stock markets were slightly buoyed by the announcement of a 25 basis point cut in the prime lending rate for loans of more than five years, on which many lenders base their mortgage rates.

Beijing hopes that this sharper-than-expected reduction will invigorate the credit and property markets, reduce financial costs for companies and individuals, and contribute to economic recovery.

On the bond market, the yield on 10-year Treasuries fell by -4.5pts to 4.251% (+50pts since the start of the year), while in Europe yields flirted with -4pts, with Bunds at 2.371% and OATs at 2.8560%.
The dollar consolidated by -0.4% against the euro, which rallied to $1.083.

Forex traders continue to talk of a 'complicated' situation for the single currency, while the European economy remains depressed for the time being.

'In these conditions, the 2023 high of 1.1276 for the pair seems very clearly unattainable in the medium term', say the teams at DeftHedge, a specialist in decision support for currency and commodity risk management.

The oil market remains torn between hopes of a global economic recovery and fears of a slower-than-expected recovery in demand.

Brent crude is down 0.5% at $83 a barrel.

In corporate news, Bic (+9%) last night reported Q4 sales of €526.1m, stable on a reported basis (-0.1%) and up 2.4% on a like-for-like basis compared with Q4 of the previous year.

This morning, Air Liquide published net income for the past year, Group share, up 11.6% to 3.08 billion euros, or 5.90 euros per share, and recurring net income up 13.3% at constant exchange rates. Investors welcome the margin increase forecast for 2024, as well as the dividend increase (+1 bonus share distributed in the spring, a traditional "gift").

CGG announces the delivery of a new CCUS (Carbon Dioxide Capture, Utilization and Storage) study to evaluate potential CO2 storage sites in the fast-growing Southeast Asian region.

Neoen reports that it has passed the milestone of 1 GW (gigawatt) of renewable energy capacity in operation or under construction in the Nordic countries, five years after launching the construction of its first wind power plant in Finland.

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