Major European markets close mixed after cautious session

FILED - A gernal view of the European flags in front of the headquarters of the European Commission in Brussels. Photo: Michael Kappeler/dpa

Despite lingering worries about growth due to the spread of the delta variant of the coronavirus, a few major markets in Europe managed to close higher on Tuesday.

Worries about tighter regulation in China and the fast-evolving situation in Afghanistan also dented sentiment.

Overall, stocks turned in a mixed performance with investors tracking earnings news and the latest batch of economic data.

The pan European Stoxx 600 edged up 0.07 per cent. The U.K.’s FTSE 100 gained 0.38 per cent, Germany’s DAX edged down marginally, and France’s CAC 40 shed 0.28 per cent. Switzerland’s SMI surged up 0.47 per cent.

Among other markets in Europe, Czech Republic, Denmark, Greece, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Sweden and Turkey closed higher.

Austria, Belgium, Finland, Iceland, Ireland and Spain ended weak. In the UK market, BHP Group climbed 3.4 per cent after the miner posted its best annual profit in nearly a decade and confirmed the spin-off of its crude assets.

Just Eat Takeaway.Com ended lower by about 3 per cent. The online food ordering company said it has reached the peak of its absolute losses in the first half of 2021.

Rentokil Initial, Hikma Pharmaceuticals, Scottish Mortgage, Ocado Group, Royal Dutch Shell, Fresnillo, Rolls-Royce Holdings and BP gained 1.5 to 3 per cent.

Pearson shares declined sharply after the publishing and education company has agreed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission to pay 1 million dollars to settle charges for misleading investors about cyber breach.

IAG, Kingfisher, Whitbread, Johnson Matthey, Taylor Wimpey and British Land Co. shed 2 to 3.25 per cent. IHG, Phoenix Group Holdings, ITV and Associated British Foods also declined sharply. Glencore drifted lower after the company said it acquired a stake in U.K. battery maker Britishvolt.

In France, Faurecia slipped more than 3 per cent on profit taking. Valeo, Societe Generale, Unibail Rodamco, BNP Paribas and Credit Agricole lost 2 to 2.8 per cent. ArcelorMittal, Renault, Accor and STMicroElectronics also ended notably lower.

In the German market, Daimler, Infineon Technologies, Henkel, BMW, Allianz, Deutsche Bank and Covestro shed 1 to 2 per cent, while Deutsche Post, Merck, SAP, E.ON and Thyssenkrupp moved higher.

In the Swiss market, Swiss Life Holding shares declined 1.7 per cent after the lender reported a fall in its premiums in the first half.

Dutch tech firm Prosus, which has a stake in Chinese tech giant Tencent, declined sharply after Chinese regulators issued a lengthy set of draft rules for the internet sector, banning unfair competition and restricting the use of user data.

The rules published by the State Administration for Market Regulation (SAMR) cover a wide range of areas from prohibitions on the way companies can use data to stamping out fake product reviews.

In economic news, the UK unemployment rate dropped 0.2 percentage points to 4.7 per cent in the second quarter, data from the Office for National Statistics showed. This was slightly below the expected rate of 4.8 per cent.

At the same time, there was a quarterly increase in the employment rate of 0.3 percentage points to 75.1 per cent.

A flash estimate from Eurostat showed the euro area economy recovered from a technical recession in the second quarter. Gross domestic product grew 2 per cent sequentially, in contrast to a 0.3 per cent drop in the first quarter.

The quarter-on-quarter growth rate matched the flash estimate released on July 30.On a yearly basis, GDP rebounded 13.6 per cent after shrinking 1.3 per cent in the first quarter. The annual rate was revised down from 13.7 per cent.

Send your news stories to and via WhatsApp on +233 244244807 Follow News Ghana on Google News


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here