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European markets climb, outpacing tepid global sentiment

Market News

European markets climb, outpacing tepid global sentiment

European markets advanced on Friday, outpacing other major markets as global investors continue to weigh the prospect of slowing economic growth.

The pan-European Stoxx 600 added 0.6% in early trade, with retail stocks climbing 1.4% to lead gains as all sectors except basic resources entered positive territory.

Shares in Asia-Pacific were mixed on Friday after taking losses for much of the week as concerns about China’s regulatory crackdown and slowing global growth weighed on risk sentiment. China Evergrande Group shares continued to plummet amid fears over its debt problems.

Stateside, stock futures were muted in early premarket trading as investors remain cautious during the traditionally weak month of September.

Investors in recent days have been reacting to softer U.S. inflation data which tempered expectations of imminent tapering of asset purchases by the Federal Reserve, and weak retail sales figures from China, which suggested a slowdown in the global economic recovery.

Back in Europe, French automaker Renault announced Thursday that it will ax up to 2,000 engineering and support jobs in France amid a mass transition toward electric vehicles.

Data on Friday showed that U.K. retail sales fell unexpectedly in August, dropping 0.9% month on month against a Reuters average forecast for a 0.5% rise. The fourth consecutive monthly decline marks the longest negative streak since records began.

A slew of euro zone harmonized inflation figures are expected later in the morning.

S4 Capital reported half-year earnings before the bell, while Primark owner Associated British Foods issued a trading update.

In terms of individual share price movement on Friday, Sweden’s Dometic Group jumped more than 7% to lead the Stoxx 600 in early trade after agreeing to a $677 million deal to buy U.S. drinkware manufacturer Igloo.

Commerzbank shares climbed 4.6% after a German news report suggested U.S. investor Cerberus is mulling a 15.6% stake in the German lender.

At the bottom of the European blue chip index, Spanish pharmaceutical company Grifols fell 3.6% after agreeing to acquire a controlling stake in Germany’s Biotest.

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