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European shares rise a little, ahead of Fed rate decision

European shares are a little higher Thursday, as investors await the latest decision from the US Federal Reserve, later in the day. Mixed earnings results and disappointing German exports data also worked to weigh on the earlier upbeat investor tone.

By 1445 BST, the EUROSTOXX 600 was 0.41% higher, while the EUROSTOXX 50 had edged up 0.05%. Regional bourses were also broadly in the green. The German DAX rose just 0.02%, the French CAC was 0.11% higher, while the Spanish IBEX had gained 0.30%.

US Fed rate decision

As the day moves on, eyes are increasingly turning to the US Federal Reserve who will announce its latest policy decision, later Thursday. While expectations are for rates to remain on hold, the markets will be watching closely for any signs of whether another rate hike will come next month.

Some disappointing German exports data, meanwhile, proved a little disappointing for the markets, earlier in the day.

Data showed that German exports and imports both fell, unexpectedly in September. Exports fell 0.8% from August, while imports were down 0.4% over the same period.

“A combination of slowing world trade and temporary factors like the new emissions norms for autos hit the German export sector over the summer months,” ING Bank’s chief economist, Carsten Brzeski, wrote in a note.

Stock movers

Looking at some individual stocks, there was mixed movement.

UniCredit shares slipped 3.71% to €11.37 after the Italian bank reported disappointing third quarter earnings.

UniCredit said that although its investment returns proved positive, reflected in its revenues, its profits were hit by two one-off items. Am €876 million loss related to its investment in Turkish bank Yapi hurt. Meanwhile additional charges associated to US sanctions violations also weighed.

However, shares in SocGen rose as the French bank shared better-than-expected earnings details. Third-quarter profits climbed over 32% amid a positive performance and also supported by a higher valuation of its stake in Euroclear.

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