1:45 PM Frankfurt – The European indexes traded lower awaiting central bank action. German employment rose in the second quarter, the UK retail sales rose unexpectedly and euro zone annual inflation was stable in July. Telekom Austria earnings rose in the second quarter.
European indexes edged lower in slow trading across the region as most traders and leaders stay away for holiday and await action from central banks.
In economic news, euro zone annual inflation remained stable at 2.4% in July and Switzerland’s economic confidence climbed in August.
In earnings news, Zurich Insurance net rose 13% and SBM Offshore swung to profit in the first-half.
In Paris trading, the CAC-40 Index declined 1.23 or 0.04% to 3,447.97 and in Frankfurt the DAX Index edged higher 3.63 or 0.1% to 6,950.98.
The yields on Spain’s benchmark 10-year bonds rose five basis points to 6.69%. Italian 10-year yields climbed 10 basis points to 5.87%.
Euro zone Inflation Stable
Euro zone annual inflation remained stable at 2.4% in July, final data from Eurostat showed. A year earlier the rate was 2.6% in July and on a monthly basis, consumer prices fell 0.5% in the month.
Core inflation that excludes energy, food, alcohol and tobacco, increased to 1.7% annually in July from 1.6% a month ago.
EU annual inflation was 2.5% in July 2012, also stable compared to June. A year earlier the rate was 2.9%.
German Employment Climbs
German employment rose in the second quarter, preliminary data from the Federal Statistics Office showed.
The number of persons in employment, whose place of employment is in Germany, increased 1.3% or 514,000 people on an annual basis to 41.6 million in the second quarter compared to the 1.4% gain recorded in the first quarter.
The average number of hours worked per person in employment decreased 0.3% annually to 331.8 hours in the second quarter, data showed.
Dutch Unemployment Soars
The number of jobless persons in the Netherlands, on a seasonally adjusted basis, increased to around 510,000 in July from about 495,000 in June, data released by the Central Bureau of Statistics showed.
UK Retail Sales Rise
The UK retail sales grew 0.3% from a month ago in July after rising 0.8% in June, data from the Office for National Statistics showed today.
On a yearly basis, sales volume rose 2.8% in July from the 2.6% growth in June.
Swiss Confidence Strengthens