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German Market Rises Ahead Of ECB Decision

5/3/2012 6:40 AM ET

The German market rose on Thursday, buoyed by some corporate news, ahead of the key rate decision from the European Central bank. Asian markets were mostly weak after economic data from the U.S. and Europe overnight dampened sentiment.

Spain raised 2.52 billion euros from medium-term debt auction, exceeding the 2.5 billion euros maximum target. However, yields increased from the prior issue.

The Euro Stoxx 50 index of eurozone bluechip stocks is advancing 1.33 percent, while the Stoxx Europe 50 index, which includes some major U.K. companies, is rising 0.79 percent.

After opening higher, the DAX index is currently adding about 1 percent.

BMW is leading the gainers by adding 3.3 percent after first-quarter profit rose on strong demand from Asia. Volkswagen is rising 0.9 percent and Daimler is up 0.2 percent.

Lufthansa is climbing 2.2 percent after stating that loss in the first quarter narrowed as the company backed its full year view.

Bayer, Merck, Fresenius and Allianz are notably higher.

Sports goods giant Adidas backed its forecast for the year issued last week after reporting higher profit and revenue for the first quarter. The stock is up about 1 percent.

Metro is advancing 0.3 percent after first-quarter loss widened sharply on investments in its consumer electronics chain Media-Saturn.

HeidelbergCement reported a wider loss for the first quarter. The stock is losing 4.1 percent.

Infineon Technologies is down 2.7 percent after profit dropped on lower margins.

Commerzbank is losing 1.1 percent and Deutsche Bank is falling 0.6 percent.

Elsewhere in Europe, the French CAC 40 is climbing 1.3 percent and the UK's FTSE 100 is adding 0.49 percent. Switzerland's SMI is rising 0.53 percent.

In economic news, Eurozone's producer prices increased less than forecast by economists in March, data from Eurostat showed.

At 7.45 am ET, the European Central Bank is slated to announce its rate decision. The central bank is set to hold fire at the policy meeting to be held in Barcelona. The Governing Council led by ECB President Mario Draghi is expected to maintain the main refi rate at a record low 1 percent.

Across Asia/Pacific, Australia's All Ordinaries slipped 0.23 percent and Hong Kong's Hang Seng slid 0.28 percent. China's Shanghai Composite Index managed to end in positive territory by edging up 0.07 percent on hopes of government measures to stem economic slowdown. The Japanese market is closed for a public holiday.

In the U.S., futures point to a higher open on Wall Street. In the previous session, stocks turned mixed over the course of the trading day after traders shrugged off a disappointing private sector jobs report. While the Nasdaq rose 0.3 percent, the Dow edged down 0.1 percent and the S&P 500 dipped 0.3 percent.

In the commodity space, crude for June delivery is sliding $0.36 to $104.86 per barrel and June gold is falling $8.4 to $1645.6 a troy ounce.

by RTT Staff Writer

For comments and feedback: editorial@rttnews.com

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