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US central bank makes emergency rate cut

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Markets summary

Maltese market closed in the green on Friday, with MSE total index ending the session 0.270% higher to 9,407.814 points. The best performer was Grand Harbour Marina plc by adding 9.09% to close at 0.60, followed by 1.90% jump of HSBC Bank Malt plc and 1.60% rise of RS2 Sofware plc with a closing price of 1.07 and 2.54 respectively. The biggest fall was seen from International Hotel Investment plc with a drop of 1.33% to close at 0.74, followed by 0.73% slid of MaltaPost plc with closing price 6.80.

European stocks finished in the black on Tuesday but well of their best levels of the session despite a powerful rally on Wall Street the day before and after a rare inter-meeting interest rate cut by the Federal Reserve. By session’s end, the benchmark Stoxx 600 had added 1.37% to trade at 381.13, alongside an advance of 1.08% for the German Dax to reach 11,985.39 while Spain’s Ibex 35 had pared its gains to finish up 0.80% at 8,811.6.

US stocks on Tuesday sharply reversed the previous day’s massive rally, as investors were disappointed with the Federal Reserve’s surprise interest-rate cut. The Dow Jones Industrial Average shed 2.9% to close at 25,917.41. The S&P 500 Index fell 2.8%, and the Nasdaq Composite Index fared worst of the three, sliding 3%.

The US central bank has slashed interest rates in response to mounting concerns about the economic impact of the coronavirus.

The Federal Reserve lowered its benchmark rate by 50 basis points to a range of 1% to 1.25%.

The emergency move comes after the G7 group of finance ministers pledged action earlier on Tuesday.

It follows warnings that slowdown from the outbreak could tip countries into recession.

Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell said the US economy remains strong but it is difficult to predict the "magnitude and persistence" of the effects of the spreading virus.

The last time the bank made an interest rate cut at an emergency meeting was during the global financial crisis of 2008.

Earlier on Tuesday, both Australia and Malaysia cut interest rates as a result of the outbreak, while finance ministers from the G7 group of nations pledged to use "all appropriate policy tools" to tackle the economic impact of coronavirus.

This article was issued by Nadiia Grech, Junior Trader at Calamatta Cuschieri. For more information visit, www.cc.com.mt. The information, view and opinions provided in this article are being provided solely for educational and informational purposes and should not be construed as investment advice, advice concerning particular investments or investment decisions, or tax or legal advice. Calamatta Cuschieri Investment Services Ltd has not verified and consequently neither warrants the accuracy nor the veracity of any information, views or opinions appearing on this website.