FTSE falls short of 6900

European Markets have bounced off new highs this morning, with the FTSE grabbing at 6900 but just falling short at 6895 and now trading flat at 6875.

The DAX also made new highs, touching a new all-time peak of 9810 before a sharp reversal, and is now off a handful points at 9746.

The equity story in London is once again one of M&A, with emphasis on the M. Tech retail has seen some consolidation as Dixons and Carphone Warehouse have agreed the merger of equals they had informed us they were discussing earlier in the year. After initial flurries of activity, both stocks are now trading lower with Dixons off 5% and Carphone off 3%. The high street might actually be a winner here, as the line from the firms is one of more jobs and not consolidative cuts.

Europe is digesting mixed GDP data and another hit to the inflation outlook. Germany led the way again, growing 0.8% for the quarter, in line with the UK. France came out stagnant and the Netherlands, Italy and Portugal all contracted. The headline figure missed comfortably, and year-on-year growth for the entire zone sits at 0.9%. Eurozone inflation again printed disappointingly (year-on-year at 0.7%) and this moves the likelihood of action in June from Mario Draghi further towards certainty. These figures certainly take the shine off the early morning equity highs, and at least on the plus side for the ECB, the euro has lost another half a cent over the course of the morning, trading to $1.3670.  

US markets retraced from all-time highs yesterday, and currently we see them pretty much unchanged, with 16,611 and 1887 the opening calls for the Dow Jones and the S&P 500 respectively. 

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