European markets open slightly higher as investors digest fresh economic data; German inflation falls

4 months ago
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European markets opened slightly higher Friday as investors digest the latest slew of corporate earnings and economic data.

The pan-European Stoxx 600 opened 0.1% higher, with sectors trading in mixed territory. Health-care stocks were 0.7% higher, while utilities dropped 0.7%.

German inflation fell in January to 3.1%, new data from the the federal statistical office showed Friday. Meanwhile, Italy will report industrial output data later in the session.

Regional markets closed slightly lower on Thursday as investors digested a slew of earnings from Unilever, Societe Generale, Maersk, Siemens and Adyen.

In Asia-Pacific, Japan’s Nikkei hit fresh 34-year highs on Friday, while most markets were either fully or partially closed for the Lunar New Year holiday. The Nikkei 225 breached the 37,000 mark for the first time in 34 years, rising 0.4%, while the Topix was flat.

Stateside, U.S. futures were lower Friday morning after the S&P 500 crossed the historic 5,000 milestone for the first time during intraday trading.

Stocks on the move: Ubisoft up 15%; L’Oreal down 7%

Shares of French video game Ubisoft maker were up 15% in early deals as the company pointed to a “turnaround” in its output in its latest earnings report.

Meanwhile, L’Oreal shares were down 7% after reporting lower-than-expected fourth-quarter sales Thursday in a sign of continued pressure on the luxury market.

German inflation fell in January to 3.1%, new data from the the federal statistical office showed Friday.

The consumer price data confirms preliminary estimates and is down from a 3.8% year-on-year rise in inflation in December.

European markets: Here are the opening calls

European markets are set to open in positive territory Thursday.

The U.K.’s FTSE 100 index is expected to open 13 points higher at 7,606, Germany’s DAX down 15 points at 16,945, France’s CAC down 23 points at 7,634 and Italy’s FTSE MIB 33 points higher at 31,220, according to data from IG.

Earnings are set to come from Unilever, Societe Generale, Maersk, Siemens and Adyen.

CNBC Pro: Nintendo’s stock could rise by 30%, say analysts — if it overcomes these hurdles

Japanese video game company Nintendo’s stock price could rise by over 30% in the next 12 months if its highly anticipated console proves a success and overcomes several hurdles, according to equity analyst David Gibson.

The gaming company could leverage its 130 million strong customer base to sell its next-generation devices. Its shares are traded in the United States, Germany and Japan.

CNBC Pro subscribers can read more here.

CNBC Pro: Asset manager names one under-the-radar market to buy when times are bad, giving 6 stock picks

Concerns over worsening geopolitical tensions, volatility in corporate earnings and uncertainty on when the U.S. Federal Reserve will cut interest rates have sent some investors on the hunt for safe-haven assets – and markets – to put their money in.

One European index stands out to portfolio manager Carla Bänziger even in a falling market, thanks to the “decent valuations” of its large and small- mid-cap stocks.

“People recommend investing in [this] market during uncertain periods – like if you are expecting a recession. For retail investors, I think it would make sense to have part of your investments in [these] equities to balance out any volatility in the market,” the portfolio manager said, naming six stocks to invest in.

CNBC Pro subscribers can read more here.…Read more by Karen Gilchrist,CNBC

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