2012 European Market Round-Up

Despite all the turmoil across Europe, most markets ended the year in the black

Rouhan Sharma 2 January, 2013 | 12:24AM
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Investors could be forgiven for being surprised that Europe’s stock markets actually logged positive returns of about 20% in 2012 (based on the MSCI Europe index), given the tumultuous turn of events across the continent's political and economic landscape, which occurred with unfailing regularity throughout the year.

To start with, Greek debt crisis concerns from 2011 carried over well into the second quarter, and it required an election with all the political drama of a hung Parliament after the conclusion of voting, and hectic negotiations thereafter, to finally establish Antonis Samaras as Greece's new prime minister and head of a coalition government in June.

European equities, languishing until then—and further dented by the political standoff—finally picked up steam midyear. It helped that the new Greek government was pro-bailout, acquiesced to the European Central Bank's terms relating to austerity measures, and promptly secured the first round of funds in order to stave off default. This was achieved amid large-scale civil unrest that included demonstrations as well as lockdowns and protests of various kinds opposing the new budget cuts.

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Securities Mentioned in Article

Security NamePriceChange (%)Morningstar
BNP Paribas50.68 EUR0.64Rating
Capgemini SE150.65 EUR0.10Rating
Commerzbank AG4.84 EUR0.64Rating
Credit Agricole SA12.14 EUR0.20Rating
Deutsche Bank AG9.79 EUR-0.61Rating
SAP SE120.70 EUR3.43Rating
Societe Generale SA21.40 EUR0.38Rating

About Author

Rouhan Sharma  Rouhan Sharma is an assistant site editor for Morningstar.com based in Mumbai, India.

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