European Shares Mixed As Bond Yields Surge

European Shares Mixed As Bond Yields Surge

August 4, 2023

European stocks traded mixed on Friday, with U.K. markets outperforming on the back of encouraging corporate earnings.

German and French markets were seeing modest losses after a slew of strong U.S. economic data and the BOJ’s tweak to its yield curve control policy sent bond yields soaring.

The pan-European STOXX 600 was down 0.3 percent at 470.31 after rallying 1.4 percent to hit a 17-month high on Thursday.

The German DAX slipped 0.2 percent and France’s CAC 40 dropped half a percent while the U.K.’s FTSE 100 was up 0.2 percent.

Austrian sensor maker AMS Osram climbed 10 percent after the company said it plans to exit noncore semiconductor businesses.

Swiss specialty chemicals maker Clariant added 1.3 percent after second-quarter core profit beat estimates.

Capgemini shares plummeted 7 percent in Paris. After posting higher half-year sales, the IT consulting group said it would invest 2 billion euros ($2.19 billion) in AI over three years.

Drug maker Sanofi tumbled 3 percent despite lifting its earnings outlook.

Birkin bag maker Hermes rose about 2 percent after first-half earnings and second-quarter sales growth beat analysts’ estimates.

Stock and derivatives exchange Euronext jumped 7 percent after it launched a 200-million-euro ($219.88 million) share buyback program.

AstraZeneca shares jumped nearly 4 percent in London after the drug maker delivered better-than-expected profits and sales in the second quarter.

Also, its unit Alexion has agreed to buy Pfizer’s early-stage rare disease gene therapy portfolio for up to $1 billion.

Lender Standard Chartered soared more than 6 percent after posting better-than-expected first-half earnings and announcing a new $1 billion share buyback.

NatWest Group advanced 1.7 percent after reporting a jump in first-half profit, benefiting from higher interest rates.

British-Airways owner IAG rallied 3.6 percent after quarterly profit beat analyst forecasts.

In economic news, official data showed that the German economy stabilized in the second quarter after two consecutive contractions.

GDP remained flat in the second quarter, following a 0.1 percent drop in the first quarter and 0.4 percent decline in the fourth quarter of 2022, Destatis reported. GDP was expected to climb 0.1 percent.

The French economy grew more than expected in the second quarter, underpinned by a rebound in exports while consumption decreased, and investment growth was modest, preliminary data from the statistical office INSEE showed.

Gross domestic product rose 0.5 percent from the first quarter, when the second biggest economy in the euro area expanded 0.1 percent, which was revised down from 0.2 percent.

Separate data from the European Commission revealed that confidence among business and consumers declined further in the euro zone in July.

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