European stock markets close mixed on weak economic data

by Jonathan Adams
European stocks

The Stoxx 600 closed down 0.2%, with gains in London, Milan and Madrid outweighed by declines in Frankfurt and Paris

European stock markets closed in mixed fashion on Thursday with the regional Stoxx 600 sliding into the red by the close as investors were met with weak economic data as they returned after the Labour Day holiday.

The Stoxx 600 closed down 0.2%, with gains in London, Milan and Madrid outweighed by declines in Frankfurt and Paris. The CAC 40 in particular dropped sharply, down 0.8%.

In economic news, the malaise in eurozone manufacturing activity worsened last month on the back of low demand despite price cuts at the factory gate, with firms axing more jobs as a result, a survey showed on Thursday. HCOB’s final eurozone manufacturing PMI dropped to 45.7 in April from March’s 46.1, and below the 50 mark indicating growth in activity. The figure was slightly more than a 45.6 preliminary estimate.

What is going to rescue the eurozone economy? While this is a difficult question, one thing is clear: It is not the manufacturing sector. Instead, this sector is prolonging its drawn out recession into April, according to Cyrus de la Rubia, chief economist at Hamburg Commercial Bank.

Investors were also still absorbing comments from Fed chair Jerome Powell on Wednesday, who said that while interest rates are unlikely to increase further, there was a “lack of further progress” in bringing down inflation to target levels. It is likely to take longer for us to gain confidence that we are on a sustainable path to 2% inflation, he added.

Luxembourg-based steel titan ArcelorMittal was a high riser after beating forecasts with its Q1 profits as it painted a positive outlook for global steel demand. Revenues were broadly in line with forecasts in the first three months of 2024 at $16.3 billion, down from $18.5 billion the year prior, but EPS beat estimates, dropping to 116 cents from 128 cents a year back but well ahead of the 83 cents projected by analysts.

Shares in Hugo Boss dipped around 7% despite first-quarter results beating forecasts at the headline level, as the German fashion group reported declining sales in the key market of China. The firm reported 4% sales growth in Asia Pacific, missing the 5.5% increase expected, as sales in China remained below last year’s levels which it said reflected “overall muted local demand”.

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed by our writers are their own and do not represent the views of Trading and Investment News. The information provided on Trading and Investment News is intended for informational purposes only. Trading and Investment News is not liable for any financial losses incurred. Conduct your own research by contacting financial experts before making any investment decisions.

Related Posts

    Sign up for our newsletter

    Get our latest downloads and information first. Complete the form below to subscribe to our weekly newsletter.

    © Copyright 2024-25
    Trading and Investment News.
    Managed By News Media International A Brand Of CAS Media Group Publishing Ltd whose registered office is – 12 Deer Park Road, Wimbledon, SW19 3TL.

    Latest articles