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BUX follows European peers

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The Budapest Stock Exchange's main BUX index finished up 0.09% at 17,621.96 Wednesday, after losing 0.80% Tuesday. It is down 5.07% from the end of last year, after it rose 2.15% in 2013. The Budapest parquet tentatively followed euro area peers upwards, and pared gains when most Western markets turned south late afternoon.

Confirmation from the National Bank of Hungary (MNB) on Wednesday of its intention to hang on to its current loose monetary policy for an extended period of time supported the Budapest parquet, although analysts views still differ on what it may involve on a wider horizon: a further base rate cut next year, or only a postponement of the first tightening from next year to 2016 as deflation persists.

Hungarian private think-tank Fiscal Responsibility Institute said on Wednesday that with GDP growth set to slow next year, this and recent modifications to the 2015 budget bill could raise Hungary's public deficit to 2.7%, or even above 3% of GDP next year if other risks materialise, against the government's plan of 2.4%.

Falling fuel prices still weighed on MOL, while further own-share purchases to the tune of more than HUF 1.5 bln supported Richter.

OTP gained 1.33% to HUF 4,100 on turnover of HUF 4.15 bln from a HUF 7.01 bln session total, a tenth short of the daily average this year. MOL lost 1.32% to HUF 11,925 on turnover of HUF 754 mln. Magyar Telekom won 0.29% to HUF 351 on turnover of HUF 275 mln. Richter advanced 0.13% to HUF 3,855 on turnover of HUF 1.78 bln. The bourse's mid-cap BUMIX went out 0.62% lower at 1,453.28.

Elsewhere in the region, Warsaw's WIG20 was down 1.11%, while Prague's PX rose 0.26%. Western Europe's major indices were mixed ahead of their close Wednesday, FTSE-100 in London down 0.21%, DAX30 in Frankfurt up 0.24%, and CAC40 in Paris down 0.67%.

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