Top Dividend Stocks – CEE MARKETS-Warsaw stocks at 15-month high, FX cools
PRAGUE, May 10 (Reuters) – Central European stock markets charged ahead on Monday, with Warsaw’s blue-chip index touching its highest since February 2020, while currencies largely gave back recent gains.
Stocks followed global equity markets higher on prospects that interest rates in the United States will remain low and the economic recovery on track.
Locally, Prague shares were also propelled by a 1% rise in utility CEZ CEZP.PR before it reports quarterly results on Tuesday. CEZ shares have been lifted to multi-year highs by expectations of a hefty dividend after it sold some foreign assets.
Prague’s PX .PX index added 0.6% overall, Budapest .BUX was 0.5% higher and Warsaw .WIG20 led gains with a 1.5% rise.
On currency markets, the Hungarian forint EURHUF= cooled 0.15% to trade at 358.12 to the euro. The Czech crown EURCZK= was steady at 25.637 per euro.
Both were waiting on inflation data due on Tuesday, with an inflation spike in Hungary recently drawing some attention.
The Hungarian central bank expects headline inflation to approach 5% in the second quarter, driven by fuel prices and tax changes, overshooting its 2%-4% target range. It has called the move temporary but has pledged to prevent any sustained rise.
Czech rate setters, on the other hand, have flagged that they could become the first in the region to begin tightening policy sooner rather than later.
Market bets on a rate hike as soon as August have jumped since last Thursday’s Czech policy meeting after which Governor Jiri Rusnok said a rate rise this year was a certainty. Rates markets were quieter on Monday while bond yields were mixed.
Elsewhere, the Polish zloty EURPLN= slipped 0.45%, giving up gains from last Friday after a decision from the country’s Supreme Court that set the stage for a hearing this week to determine how courts treat thousands of borrowers who took out Swiss franc loans more than a decade ago.
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Note: daily change
Note: FRA quotes are for ask prices
(Reporting by Jason Hovet in Prague Editing by Gareth Jones)
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