European markets snap back from last week’s falls, HSBC weighs on the FTSE 100

<p>Investors shrugged off geopolitical concerns on Monday with most benchmark indexes showing solid gains at the bell. The price of oil also eased slightly after […]</p>

Investors shrugged off geopolitical concerns on Monday with most benchmark indexes showing solid gains at the bell. The price of oil also eased slightly after last week’s 10 percent surge to above $100 a barrel, stock markets now seem to be pricing in that the recent turmoil in Libya wont effect their oil supply. Germanys DAX 30 was one of the best performing indexes on the day surging 84 points on the day and recouping some of last week’s 4 percent drop.

The FTSE 100 lagged other European bourses today, managing to close just shy of physiologically important 6000 level after disappointing results from HSBC. Shares in the bank dropped over 5 percent after pre-tax profits came in below forecasts at $19 billion. Although profits have more than doubled since the end of 2009 the market had been looking for a number closer to $20 billion. On a conference call this morning new CEO Stuart Gulliver told analysts that returns will be lower than before the financial crises by dropping the return on equity target to between 12 and 15 percent.

Data out of the U.S. also helped underpin gains in stocks with Chicago purchasing managers index topping expectations. The business sentiment indicator was forecast to come in slightly lower than last month’s reading of 68.8 but topped expectations with a reading of 71.2. Personal income also rose to 1 percent as the Fed extended income tax cuts to boost American pay packets in January.

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