Brexit uncertainty weighs on eurozone growth, Draghi warns

Brexit uncertainty weighs on eurozone growth, Draghi warns

Brexit uncertainty weighs on eurozone growth, Draghi warns

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan paused after four straight days of gains but held near its highest since last August.

The single currency was 0.13% lower at $1.12595 but was up 0.46% at 125.7yen. On Wall Street, the S&P 500 added 0.35 per cent, the Nasdaq climbed 0.7 per cent while the Dow was barely changed. "Those fears have reversed now", said Shane Oliver, chief economist at AMP.

First-time filings for USA jobless benefits dropped to a 49-1/2-year low last week, pointing to sustained labor market strength that could counter fears of a sharp slowdown in US economic growth.

ECB President Mario Draghi warned on Wednesday (10 April) that the uncertainty around Brexit was weighing on the eurozone's growth but said he was still "hopeful" that major disruptions could be averted.

The Frankfurt-based bank's benchmark refinancing rate has now been at zero for more than three years, after steadily and swiftly dropping there in the aftermath of the 2007/8 great recession and the eurozone debt woes that followed.

Meanwhile, UK economic data surprised on the positive side.

Minutes from a March 19-20 meeting of Federal Reserve policymakers show they saw the USA economy weathering a global slowdown without a recession in the new few years.

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But some Fed policymakers said they may want to nudge up rates if the United States economy keeps performing as expected. The US-China trade dispute isn't helping either.

Investors will next focus on inflation data from China at 0130 GMT.

Reckitt Benckiser Group Plc shares fell 6.5% to weigh on Britain's blue chip FTSE 100 index after the U.S. Justice Department accused Indivior Plc, a former RB unit, of illegally boosting prescriptions for its blockbuster opioid addiction treatment.

And he added that despite the weak activity, "the probabilities of a recession remain low".

Oil prices rallied more than 1 percent after US data showing a deep drawdown in gasoline stocks overshadowed crude inventories rising to 17-month highs, and as sanctions and blackouts in Venezuela helped tighten global supplies.

In commodities, Brent futures eased 14 cents to US$71.59 (RM293.11) a barrel. A couple expressed concerns about the recent inversion of the US yield curve as an omen for a slowdown.

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