* Currencies ease, bonds mixed on hawkish Fed, reaction is muted * Czech central bank seen keeping rates on hold * Zloty off 20-month high but Polish stocks hit 23-month high * Kuna steady though snap elections are possible in Croatia By Sandor Peto BUDAPEST, May 4 Central European currencies eased slightly on Thursday after hawkish comments from the Federal Reserve and ahead of a likely decision by the Czech central bank to keep interest rates on hold. Central banks in the European Union's eastern wing have shown no signs that a rebound in inflation since late 2016 could prompt them to start reversing years of interest rate loosening any time soon. The Czech central bank (CNB), however, four weeks ago removed its cap which had kept the crown weaker than 27 against the euro. That could lift the crown by some 4 percent in the coming year according to a Reuters poll, but speculative crown buying positions worth tens of billions of euros built in the past months may keep it volatile in the short term. The crown eased a shade to 26.78 against the euro by 0832 GMT, retreating from two-week highs touched on Wednesday. The Czech coalition government collapsed on Tuesday, but investors continued to ignore politics in the Czech Republic which is regarded as the region's safe-haven market. Czech 10-year government bond yields have fallen since Friday when JPMorgan added Czech papers to its GBI-EM index. Raiffeisen analyst Gintaras Shlizhyus said in a note that this added weight to their "hypothesis of likely more support for CZK developing". "The government resignation failed to impress financial markets so any volatility from politics (is) unlikely to feed into FX market at this stage," Shlizhyus added. The kuna was steady at 7.4475 even though the Croatian parliament started to discuss a no-confidence motion against the finance minister on Wednesday that could force a snap election. The zloty shed 0.4 percent to 4.2157 against the euro, but dealers said that was a natural correction after a jump to 20-month highs on Wednesday in illiquid international markets, when local exchanges were closed due to a national holiday. The overall sentiment, however, remained positive, indicated by a 1 percent rise in Warsaw's main equities index to a 23-month high, extending its gains so far this year to 24 percent. Bank and energy stocks lifted the index even though heavyweight copper producer KGHM's stocks shed 3 percent, with London copper prices stumbling. Major banks in the region -- Czech Komercni and Romanian BRD -- reported a jump in their first-quarter earnings. The leu was steady, but it stays near one-month lows at 4.545 against the euro as investors remain worried over a proposal to widen a draft bill on prison pardons to include corruption offences. CEE SNAPS AT 1032 MARKETS HOT CET CURRENCIES Lates Previ Daily Chang t ous e bid close chang in e 2017 Czech crown 26.78 26.77 -0.02 0.85% 00 55 % Hungary 312.3 311.9 -0.11 -1.11 forint 000 500 % % Polish 4.215 4.200 -0.36 4.46% zloty 7 7 % Romanian 4.545 4.547 +0.0 -0.22 leu 0 4 5% % Croatian 7.447 7.451 +0.0 1.44% kuna 5 5 5% Serbian 123.0 123.1 +0.1 0.28% dinar 000 950 6% Note: daily calculate previ close 1800 change d from ous at CET STOCK S Lates Previ Daily Chang t ous e close chang in e 2017 Prague 1002. 996.2 +0.6 +8.7 52 9 3% 8% Budapest 32263 32077 +0.5 +0.8 .36 .72 8% 1% Warsaw 2414. 2392. +0.9 +23. 80 09 5% 97% Bucharest 8244. 8209. +0.4 +16. 37 88 2% 36% Ljubljana 774.6 777.6 -0.38 +7.9 4 1 % 5% Zagreb 1892. 1890. +0.1 -5.13 47 16 2% % Belgrade <.BELEX15 714.8 719.9 -0.71 -0.35 > 5 7 % % Sofia 668.8 664.7 +0.6 +14. 9 1 3% 06% BONDS Yield Yield Sprea Daily d (bid) chang vs chang e Bund e in Czech sprea Republic d 2-year <CZ2YT=RR -0.09 0.086 +063 +8bp > 1 bps s 5-year <CZ5YT=RR 0.045 0.002 +039 -2bps > bps 10-year <CZ10YT=R 0.818 -0.00 +045 -4bps R> 4 bps Poland 2-year <PL2YT=RR 2.018 0.014 +274 +1bp > bps s 5-year <PL5YT=RR 2.92 0.041 +327 +2bp > bps s 10-year <PL10YT=R 3.495 0.033 +313 +0bp R> bps s FORWARD RATE AGREEMENT 3x6 6x9 9x12 3M inter bank Czech Rep < 0.34 0.41 0.5 0 PRIBOR=> Hungary < 0.25 0.35 0.46 0.16 BUBOR=> Poland < 1.751 1.78 1.829 1.73 WIBOR=> Note: FRA are for quotes ask prices ************************************************** ************ (Additional reporting by Luiza Ilie in Bucharest and Bartosz Chmielewski in Warsaw; Editing by Toby Davis)
ChargePoint secures $43 million in funding led by Siemens
SAN FRANCISCO, June 28 Electric vehicle charging station maker ChargePoint Inc said on Wednesday it had secured $43 million in financing led by German engineering group Siemens AG, bringing to a close the U.S. company's latest funding round at $125 million.