The CAC40 ended the session up just 0.43% at 8045Pts, after having gained 1.4%. The Euro-Stoxx50 also saw its rise from +1.5% (above 5,030pts) to +0.4% (around 4,975) in 1 hour.

Wall Street, which had wiped out half of Friday's losses (Dow Jones and S&P500 at +0.8/+0.9%, Nasdaq at over 0.9%), has now lost 90% of its advance, and the Nasdaq has even slipped back into the red.

Stock markets had regained a semblance of serenity this morning - as the time seems ripe for diplomacy, according to Joe Biden's wishes - but the rate hike is causing havoc.

The surprise of the day is the deterioration in the bond markets: the US 10-year is up almost +14pts to 4.632%, our OATs are up +8.5pts to 2.9450%, Bunds are up +8pts to 2.435%, and Italian BTPs are up +9pts to 3.83%.

Also of note is the continued rise of the Dollar, which gained +0.1% against the Euro, which fell to a low of 1.0640, a level not seen since 2/11/2023).

(Geopolitical) tension is thus clearly easing, with the VIX at -5.5% towards 16.30, Brent crude oil consolidating from $91 to $89.4 (-0.8%) and gold below $2.340 after a brief 'peak' at $2,430 on Friday (and a close of around $2,375).

Investors therefore seem to be focusing on the results 'season' which starts in full swing this week: some 44 companies belonging to the S&P 500 index, including six Dow Jones stocks, will be releasing their accounts this week.

Investors will be able to assess the 'fundamentals' of the economy through the accounts of listed companies... and optimism is the order of the day this Monday.

However, FactSet data now predict only a 0.9% rise in US corporate earnings for the first quarter, compared with +3.4% at the end of March.

While JPMorgan's performance was disappointing last Friday, Goldman Sachs' accounts - due mid-day - were reassuring: 'GS' has little exposure to provisions for default risk on its - virtually nil - outstanding corporate and retail loans).

The results of Bank of America and Morgan Stanley, due tomorrow, will be particularly closely watched by the markets.

Announcements from Johnson & Johnson, Netflix and Procter & Gamble will also be closely watched over the coming days.

In Europe, the week will be dominated on Wednesday by results from ASML, one of the driving forces behind the recent rise in European markets, followed by Nokia.

According to analysts, positive releases - and not just from the technology sector - will help the stock market rally by boosting optimism about equities.

In terms of economic indicators, US retail sales rose by a sequential 0.7% in March, ahead of market expectations, following a 0.9% increase the previous month (revised from an initial estimate of +0.6%).

The Commerce Department, which publishes these figures, states that excluding the automotive sector (vehicles and equipment), US retail sales rose by 1.1% last month, following a 0.6% increase in February.

Manufacturing activity continued to contract in the New York region in April, remaining in negative territory for the fourth month in a row.

The 'Empire State' index - compiled by the Federal Reserve's regional office - came in at -14.3 this month, compared with -20.9 in March.

The weekly hours worked sub-index deteriorated the most, to -10.6 from -10.4 last month, followed by the shipments sub-index (-14.4 from -6.9 the previous month), and the six-month forward expectations sub-index deteriorated from 21.6 to 16.7.

In Europe, seasonally-adjusted industrial production rose by 0.8% in the eurozone and 0.7% in the EU in February compared with the previous month, according to Eurostat estimates, following falls of 3% and 2.7% respectively in January.

Investors' eyes will also turn to Beijing, where Chinese gross domestic product (GDP) figures will be published tomorrow, providing valuable clues as to the recovery of the world's second-largest economy.

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