European Shares Rise As Trump Meets China’s Liu

European stocks were broadly higher on Friday as optimism over U.S.-China trade talks prevailed and investors counted on more stimulus from Beijing to lift growth.

U.S.-China talks are entering a more serious phase with U.S. President Donald Trump scheduled to meet with Chinese Vice Premier Liu He in the White House today, with the goal of reaching a trade deal ahead of a March 1 deadline.

The pan European Stoxx 600 was up 0.1 percent at 370.81 in opening deals after declining 0.3 percent in the previous session.

The German DAX was rising 0.2 percent, while France’s CAC 40 index and the U.K.’s FTSE 100 were moving up around 0.3 percent.

Chipmaker ASM International soared 7.3 percent after it reported record high orders in the fourth quarter.

Specialty chemical company Sika rallied 4 percent after its annual profit topped forecasts.

Inspiration Healthcare Group plunged nearly 6 percent after the medical device company said it expects flat profit before tax and revenues for fiscal 2019.

Non-Standard Finance soared 6 percent as it announced the terms of a firm offer to acquire the entire issued share capital of Provident Financial plc.

Kingspan Group rallied 2.4 percent after posting strong growth in 2018 profits.

Radiation therapy equipment maker Elekta fell more than 10 percent after its third quarter core earnings lagged forecasts.

AB InBev lost 2.6 percent after U.S.-based Kraft Heinz posted disappointing full-year results.

IT services and consulting firm Sopra Steria jumped 18 percent after unveiling its full-year results.

Saint Gobain dropped 1.7 percent. The construction materials group suffered a slump in annual net profit, hit by asset impairments due to economic uncertainty.

In economic releases, Germany’s economy stagnated in the final three months of the year, thus narrowly avoiding a technical recession, latest data from the Federal Statistical Office confirmed.

The Munich-based Ifo economic institute said its business climate index, based on a monthly survey of companies, declined to 98.5 this month, the lowest level since November 2014, from 99.1 last month.

Euro zone headline consumer inflation fell 1.0 percent sequentially in January, Eurostat said. That came in line with the previous estimates and matched expectations.

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