EUROPE MARKETS: AstraZeneca And Daimler Lead European Stocks Higher
By Steve Goldstein, MarketWatch
European stocks gained on Thursday, with investors bidding auto
makers and pharmaceuticals higher in the face of data showing a
stagnating economy as European Central Bank President Mario Draghi
leads his last interest-rate meeting.
The Stoxx Europe 600 rose 0.38% to 396.55. Speculation that the
European Union will grant the U.K. an extension to Brexit also
helped buoy sentiment.
The German DAX added 0.49%, to 12861.02, the French CAC 40 rose
0.36% to 5673.77 and the U.K. FTSE 100 increased 0.67%, to
The ECB isn't expected to take any fresh action at Draghi's last
meeting. "The economic data continues to show underlying weakness
in the eurozone, and we expect the ECB to reiterate that risks are
still to the downside," said Andrew Harman, senior portfolio
manager at First State Investments, who expects further weakness in
That data includes the flash eurozone composite purchasing
managers index barely staying over the 50 mark in October. The
outlook in Germany in particular was worrisome, with the services
PMI falling to a 37-month low. Read:German economy continues to
struggle with manufacturing troubles spreading to services
AstraZeneca (AZN.LN)(AZN.LN) provided the largest upward pull to
the Stoxx 600, with the Anglo-Swedish pharmaceutical rising 3.3% as
cancer drug sales drove better-than-forecast third-quarter sales
Daimler (DAI.XE) rose 4.4% as the German auto maker reported a
better-than-forecast operating profit
Nokia (NOKIA.HE) (NOKIA.HE) plunged 20% as the Finnish telecom
equipment maker lowered its guidance for this year and next, citing
margin pressure, more 5G investments and additional digitalization
investments. The company also cited high costs linked to
first-generation 5G products, profitability challenges in China and
pricing pressure in early 5G deals.
Rival Ericsson (ERIC-B.SK) slipped 3%.
(END) Dow Jones Newswires
October 24, 2019 05:27 ET (09:27 GMT)
Copyright (c) 2019 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.
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