EU leaders agree recovery plan
21 July

EU leaders agree recovery plan


EU leaders agreed to co-finance their economies by managing to reach a compromise which saw grants to finance low-carbon activity and health care cut. Still, almost a third of the funds will go to fighting climate change. Reaching the deal took more than four days of acrimonious negotiations and represents a victory for German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron, who had drafted its first version. The deal is seen as a major step towards further integration for the EU as it lets the EU's executive arm issue debt on behalf of the entire bloc.


The Nasdaq 100 index had its best gain in three months to close at a record high. The international lockdown drove a rise in big technology companies like Amazon and Zoom Video Communications. Cloud sales are also helping to offset coronavirus-fuelled declines in the consulting services business, sending IBM shares higher in late trading. The SPX500 has also been gaining steadily, although it remains short of the February peaks reached before the pandemic.


Stock markets in Europe surged to their highest in more than four months following the massive stimulus plan that paves the way for the European Commission, the EU’s executive arm, to raise billions of euros on capital markets on behalf of all 27 states. EuroStoxx 50 was up 0.5%, while German DAX gained 0.7%. The blue-chip FTSE 100 gained 0.5% helped by autos, banks and real estate stocks as well as promising results for a vaccine developed in collaboration with Oxford University.


The euro marked a fresh four-month high and commodity currencies found support after European countries agreed on a rescue package for the bloc’s coronavirus-hit economies. It pushed the euro 0.2% higher to $1.1470, its strongest since early March, although it soon retreated back to just below flat since the agreement was widely expected. Encouraging results from several COVID-19 vaccine trials, kept safe havens such as the greenback under pressure. The Japanese yen was steady at 107.29 per dollar. The pound hung on to broad gains made overnight as many traders closed out long EURGBP positions in the wake of the EU Summit progress and ahead of the fresh Brexit talks. It touched a month high of $1.2684 against the dollar and against the euro it was close to a week high at 90.13 pence per euro.


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