Stocks Pause After Rally, Seek Rate-Cut Signals: Markets Wrap

(Bloomberg) — European shares paused around a record high after six weeks of gains, as investors waited for reassurance that central banks are on track to cut interest rates in the coming months.

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The pan-European Stoxx 600 gauge rose 0.1%, although the tech shares subindex outperformed, tracking Friday’s Wall Street gains. Futures for the Nasdaq 100 ticked slightly higher, hinting that megacap tech shares such as Nvidia Corp. could advance further. Treasuries slipped, while oil prices steadied near the highest level this year after OPEC+ extended production cuts.

The S&P 500 index has now gained for 16 of the last 18 weeks, a run not seen since 1971, Deutsche Bank AG analysts pointed out. That rally was fanned further last week by US data that reinforced bets the Federal Reserve would be able to cut rates later this year. The earnings season, meanwhile, showed companies averaging 8% earnings growth.

“Better economic outlook, bullish investor sentiment and some better earnings have supported the equity markets,” Jefferies strategist Mohit Kumar wrote in a note. “Whether it’s the economic outlook or the central bank ‘put’ being back on the table, investors are very positive on risky assets.”

While markets

Introducing Microsoft Copilot for Finance in Microsoft 365| Microsoft 365 Blogs

The finance department is the heart of the organization, juggling a multitude of critical, yet complex tasksfrom quote-to-cash processes like credit and collections to risk management and compliance. Financial teams are not only responsible for these mandatory, labor-intensive operations, but are increasingly tasked with real-time insights into business performance and recommendations for future growth initiatives. In fact, 80% of finance leaders and teams face challenges to take on more strategic work beyond the operational portions of their roles.¹ On the one hand, teams are poised and ready to play a larger role in driving business growth strategy. On the other hand, however, they can’t walk away from maintaining a critical and mandatory set of responsibilities.

Microsoft is introducing a solution to help finance teams reclaim time and stay on top of the critical decisions that can impact business performance. Microsoft Copilot for Finance is a new Copilot experience for Microsoft 365 that unlocks AI-assisted competencies for financial professionals, right from within the productivity applications they use every day. Now available in public preview, Copilot for Finance connects to the organization’s financial systems, including Dynamics 365 and SAP, to provide role-specific workflow automation, guided actions, and recommendations in