The flagship CAC 40 index was in balance (+0.02%) around 10:00, grabbing 1.18 points to 7,230.95 points. The previous day, the index ended slightly higher by 0.27%.

"This week's rate hikes by the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) and the Bank of Canada have somewhat complicated the situation as to what the Fed could do next week," said Michael Hewson of CMC Markets.

The Bank of Canada, in particular, took markets by surprise this week by raising its key interest rate by 25 basis points to 4.75%, the highest since May 2001.

Next week, the all-powerful US Federal Reserve (Fed) will meet on June 13-14, followed by the European Central Bank (ECB) on Thursday and the Bank of Japan on Friday.

"We expect the outcome of the June monetary policy meeting to be a compromise: no rate change during this meeting, while reminding markets that future rate hikes are not ruled out," said HSBC's Ryan Wang.

In anticipation of this meeting, the economic data that could guide the Fed's decision is being scrutinized. The day before, the U.S. Labor Department reported that weekly jobless claims climbed in early June and are the highest since October 2021, meaning layoffs have multiplied.

"We need the U.S. job market to lose some of its strength so that the Fed can stop raising rates, otherwise the major central banks will continue to raise theirs," said Ipek Ozkardeskaya, an analyst at Swissquote Bank.

In addition, "U.S. companies have laid off more in the first five months of this year than in the whole of last year," adds the analyst.

Vivendi, 20 years and then goes away

After more than 20 years of presence in the flagship index of the Paris Stock Exchange, the CAC 40, the media giant Vivendi (-1.27% to 8.23 euros around 10:00), slimmed, will be replaced by the specialist in prepaid payment services Edenred (+0.39% to 61.18 euros).

Vivendi Universal, then Vivendi, entered the CAC 40 in 2000, when the company separated from Vivendi Environnement, which will become Veolia (+0.35% to 28.62 euros), and after the integration of Canal+, already present in the flagship index. Its downgrade will take effect on Friday, June 16, after the close of trading.

© 2023 AFP