The latest news and events driving markets around the world, supplied by Marketwatch and Reuters.
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* IMF's Lagarde warns of shift to geopolitical risks. * Mnuchin calls for more scrutiny of currency moves. * ECB says ready to offer liquidity to French banks. By Leika Kihara and Francesco Canepa.
Rio Tinto rallies after upgrade. U.K. stocks ended Friday's choppy session with a slight loss, as commodity shares came under pressure, leaving the benchmark FTSE 100 with its worst weekly performance in five months. Stocks had continued to search for firm direction even after a drop in the pound, with that move spurred by March retail sales that missed the mark and raised the prospect of a slowdown in British economic growth.
By Sara Sjolin and Carla Mozee, MarketWatch. Eurozone PMIs rise to 6- year highs and beat forecasts. French stocks closed lower Friday after a suspected terror attack in Paris just ahead of the country's presidential election vote, helping to leave the regional equity benchmark with a loss for the week.
In the months since President Donald Trump was elected, consumer and business confidence have soared, but the economy has slowed. The split has rarely been so stark and, while optimists have been hoping the economy will soon catch up with sentiment, it is looking more likely that sentiment will roll over. Following a string of weak sales, spending and production data, economists have cut their expectations of economic growth for the first quarter.
Investors optimistic despite geopolitical worries. Stock markets across Asia were higher early Friday, catching an updraft from overnight gains in the U.S. as investors positioned themselves ahead of the start of the French presidential election. Markets were calm following a suspected terrorist attack in Paris overnight that left at least one police officer dead, three days before the election.
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