European shares edge higher after two days of declines

European shares were trading marginally in the green around midday Thursday, after sentiment improved following two straight days of losses. The tech sector recovered some ground while the leisure industry was also positive.

European shares edge higher after two days of declines

European shares were trading marginally in the green around midday Thursday, after sentiment improved following two straight days of losses. The tech sector recovered some ground while the leisure industry was also positive.

By 1230 BST, the EUROSTOXX 600 was barely changed from the open, while the EUROSTOXX was up 0.06%. The regional bourses were also modestly higher. The German DAX gained 0.13%, the French CAC was flat, while the Spanish IBEX was 0.2% higher.

Mixed backdrop proves mildly supportive, on balance

Investor sentiment was more positive Thursday, following the news Wednesday the US Government appears to be making further progress on passing the tax reform bill.

Elsewhere, analysts said the tech sell off wasn’t based on any fundamental problems. Rather, investors chose to take a good opportunity to take some profits, as the year end approaches.

However, South African based furniture and discount retailer Steinhoff continued to tank in the wake of Wednesday’s revelation of an accounting scandal at the firm. After sliding by over 60% yesterday, Steinhoff International shares crashed another 29% to trade at €0.79.

And, some disappointing European data releases also helped to limit gains. German industrial production fell for a second straight month in October, against expectations for an increase.

Stock movers  

Individual stock movements of note included a handful of risers.

French telecoms business Orange shares rose 1.9% to trade €14.51 shortly after midday Thursday. The gain followed news of stronger growth and adjusted target for 2018 and 2019.

UK IT educational specialists RM PLC, meanwhile, surged 15.84% to £186.50 on news it anticipates its full year results to beat expectations.

Among the fallers in the European trading session so far were:

  • German energy firm Uniper shares were 1.03% lower at €25.54.
  • French hypermarket retailer Carrefour shares slid 2.77% to €17.71.
  • Anglo American, Rio Tinto and Tullow Oil shares were all trading between 1% and 2% lower.

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