European stocks gain, helped by positive global sentiment

European stocks gain, helped by positive global sentiment

European stock markets traded broadly higher Wednesday, supported by positive global sentiment. Moreover, Germany’s Commerzbank witnessed a second-quarter loss.

The DAX in Germany traded 0.55% higher at 15,639.43. The CAC 40 in France surged 0.29% at 6,742.97, and the U.K.’s FTSE 100 soared 0.23% at 7,122.96.

Remarkably, European markets were supported by a positive handover. Meanwhile, Asian markets increased after China’s services sector recorded faster growth in July. On Wall Street, the broad-based S&P 500 closed Tuesday at a new record high.

The European second-quarter earnings season has continued Wednesday. Remarkably, it has been generally positive so far.

Stocks of Taylor Wimpey, the U.K. homebuilder, climbed 4.2% after raised its full-year earnings outlook, benefiting from U.K.’s housing boom. Meanwhile, Hugo Boss stock rose 1.2% after the German luxury fashion house announced it anticipated business to continue to recover in the second half of the year. Notably, sales rebounded to pre-pandemic levels in the U.K. and China in the second quarter.

Commerzbank stock declined 4.5% after the German lender posted a second-quarter loss. The slump came after the news that it continues its major restructuring, involving hundreds of branch closures and 10,000 job cuts. The bank also reported it would write off 200 million euros in the quarter, abandoning a project to outsource securities settlement to the Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation (HSBC).

the Eurozone July services PMI data increased slightly from the previous month

Thales, the French aerospace firm, stocks gained 1.9%. The rise came after the news it was in talks to sell its railway signalling business to Japan’s Hitachi for about $2 billion.

Meanwhile, Rolls-Royce stock surged 1.8% after the British engine maker agreed to sell its Norwegian ship engine business, Bergen, to UK-based Langley Holdings, for about $130 million.

In Switzerland, questions over the recent boost in pharma giant Roche Holding AG was answered as SoftBank announced it had taken a $5 billion stake in the company. Roche stock has increased by more than 25% since May and added another 0.9% in early trade.

In economic news, the Eurozone July services PMI data increased slightly from the previous month. However, it came in just below anticipations.

Moreover, oil prices stabilized Wednesday following the decline over concerns that rising coronavirus infections in the U.S. and China, the two largest consumers of crude in the world, will hit fuel demand.

Additionally, U.S. crude oil supply data from the American Petroleum Institute showed a draw of 879,000 barrels for the week ending July 30.

Investors are now waiting for crude oil supply data from the EIA, due later on Wednesday, for confirmation.

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