Stockholm markets recoil on debt crisis concerns

Stockholm markets recoil on debt crisis concerns
The Stockholm stock exchange followed markets across Europe and Asia downwards on Tuesday morning after a day of significant gains on Monday and indicating that the recent turbulence remains.

The markets that performed the strongest in Monday’s rebound fell the furthest in early trading.

The Stockholm OMXS index was down 1.4 percent by 11am after Asian markets closed down on the back of continued concerns over the Europe debt crisis. Tokyo’s Nikkei 225 dropped 1.14 percent while the Hong Kong Hang Seng fell by 1.4 percent.

While the major US stock exchanges had a strong day on Monday, the major European exchanges opened cautiously on Tuesday morning with the Paris CAC down 2.1 percent in early trading, Spain’s IBEX down 2.8 percent and Frankfurt’s DAX down 1.6 percent.

The euro also declined against both the US$ and the Swedish krona after strong gains on Monday, while interest rate spreads between German and Greek government securities starting to widen again.

The Stockholm decline was lead by many of the stocks that had led the bulls on Monday with financial shares such as SEB, Swedbank, Nordea and Handelsbanken falling by 1-2 percent. Mining firms Boliden and Lundin Mining also fell back.

Building firms NCC and Peab meanwhile performed strongly, up 1.1 and 1.2 percent respectively.

The underlying Swedish economy showed continued signs of recovery on Tuesday, with new figures from Statistics Sweden (SCB) showing a stabilization of the labour market with around 9 percent unemployment.

The number of vacancies at the country’s employment agencies climbed in April to 48,000, 14,000 up on the corresponding period a year ago.

“The situation on the labour market is stabilizing. More are getting work and many job-seekers have been given work experience and ‘new start’ jobs,” said Lena Liljebäck at the Public Employment Service (Arbetsförmedlingen).

The SCB statistics also showed that inflation remained stable at 1.0 percent in April, down from 1.2 percent in March.

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