US investors responded positively on Thursday to the Federal Reserve’s decision to hike interest rates for the third time in 2018, with equity markets putting an end to a run of four straight sessional declines.
In its Wednesday announcement, the Federal Reserve sought to prepare investors for a message of gradual interest rate rises dependent on strength in the economy.
Despite some uncertainty surrounding the first budget from Italy’s populist coalition government, European stocks were on the rise, with both the DAX and Euro Stoxx 50 finishing up on the day.
The euro and the pound slipped.
The euro continued its descent on Thursday, as it lost 93 points to $1.1641 – undoing gains from earlier in the week following a positive announcement from Eurozone Central Bank president Mario Draghi on eurozone inflation. Sterling dipped 88 points to $1.3079.
In New York, the S&P 500 gained 8 points to 2,914 as the dollar strengthened against the pound, while the Dow Jones also rose by 54 points to finish at 26,439.93. In Europe, both the exporter-heavy DAX and Euro Stoxx 50 trended upward, gaining 50 points and 16 points respectively. In London, the FTSE 100 finished at 7,545.43 – up 34 points.