European Stocks Mostly Higher; SocGen Leads Busy Earnings Day By

© Reuters.

By Peter Nurse – European stock markets traded modestly higher Wednesday, with investors digesting a bundle of corporate news on a busy earnings day.

At 4:10 AM ET (0910 GMT), the in Germany traded 0.1% lower, while the U.K.’s climbed 0.1% and the in France rose 0.1%.

Helping the tone of European stock markets of late has been a solid earnings season, and Wednesday saw a number of companies releasing results.

Societe Generale (OTC:) stock rose 2.9% after the French banking giant saw a “significant improvement” in its business during the second half of 2020, after heavy losses on equity derivatives earlier in the year.

Thyssenkrupp (DE:) stock rose 4.6% after the German conglomerate raised its full-year outlook for sales, cash flow and profits, citing improved demand for automotive components and materials.

Adyen (AS:) stock soared 9.8%, to an all-time high, after the Dutch company known for handling payment processing for Facebook (NASDAQ:) and other large online firms, beat expectations, helped by growth in the Americas.

On the flip side, Heineken (OTC:) stock fell 2.1% after the Dutch brewer said it was cutting around 8,000 jobs following a review of its operations launched in October.

Maersk (CSE:) stock dropped 7.6% after the world’s largest container shipping line offered a disappointing outlook, saying it sees signs freight rates are close to peaking.

Earlier Wednesday, China’s rose in annual terms in January for the first time in a year, according to data released earlier Wednesday, pointing to strong manufacturing growth in the world’s second-largest economy.

However, this positive news was tempered by Chinese falling back into deflation as virus restrictions curbed travel and spending.

Back in Europe, German were confirmed climbing 0.8% in January, a gain of 1.0% on the year, having slipped into negative territory late in 2020 due to the government’s temporary VAT cut, which has now expired.

Stock markets have climbed strongly in the last few months on expectations of a global economic recovery on the back of vast fiscal and monetary spending coupled with vaccination programs to the end of the coronavirus pandemic.

Italian stocks remained near 12-month highs on Tuesday after Silvio Berlusconi said his Forza Italia party will back the new government of , bringing him closer to commanding a solid majority in the Chamber of Deputies.

Oil prices edged higher Wednesday, helped by a further drop in  stocks. The American Petroleum Institute reported late Tuesday an unexpected fall in last week. Supply data from the Energy Information Administration, due later in the day, will now be studied carefully.

U.S. crude futures traded 0.4% higher at $58.61 a barrel, while the international benchmark contract rose 0.3% to $61.42. 

Elsewhere, rose 0.4% to $1,845.30/oz, while traded 0.1% higher at 1.2131.




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