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Europe Markets

Feb. 6, 2019, 9:19 a.m. EST

European markets pause, after latest signs of economic distress in the eurozone

German stocks down as Daimler disappoints

By Emily Horton


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Europe’s markets were a largely mixed bag, but the main index was barely higher on Wednesday after the latest signs of economic distress in the eurozone.

Investors monitored another set of earnings, which dented shares of BNP Paribas SA, (PAR:FR:BNP) ING Groep NV (AMS:NL:INGA) and car manufacturer Daimler AG.

How are markets performing?

The Stoxx Europe 600 (STOXX:XX:SXXP) inched up 0.1% to 365.47 after finishing up on a two-month high of 1.4% on Tuesday.

Germany’s DAX 30 (XEX:DX:DAX) (XEX:DX:DAX) (XEX:DX:DAX) was the regions biggest loser, dropping by 0.3% to 11,328.91, with France’s CAC 40 (PAR:FR:PX1) off 0.1% to 7,172.76 and the FTSE 100 (FTSE:UK:UKX) flat at 7,172.31.

The euro (XTUP:EURUSD) fell to $1.1392 from $1.1406 late Tuesday in New York, while the pound (XTUP:GBPUSD) inched up to $1.2959 from $1.2949.

What’s driving the markets?

In the latest in a series of signals pointing to a grinding-lower economy in Europe, official data showed that German manufacturing orders slumped in December, led by a sharp drop in orders from outside the eurozone.

This follows on from Tuesday’s purchasing mangers index data for the euro zone, which showed expansion slowed for the fifth consecutive month, though a slower decline than originally expected.

Stocks globally paused after U.S. President Donald Trump gave his second State of the Union speech on Tuesday, which added little detail about how trade talks between the U.S. and China are progressing. As such it received “a rather muted reaction” from investors, according to the head of research at ADSS, Konstantinos Anthis.

What shares were active?

Among banks, BNP Paribas SA (PAR:FR:BNP)  cut its revenue guidance on Wednesday, leaving its shares down 0.5%. Dutch bank ING Groep NV (AMS:NL:INGA)   added 4% after it reported a 25% rise in fourth-quarter profits.

The maker of Mercedes-Benz cars, Daimler AG (FRA:DE:DAI) , lost 2% after it announced its earnings had slumped in the fourth quarter. However, this news caused little movement in Europe auto sector.

Munich Re (FRA:DE:MUV2)   gained 0.4%, after the Germany insurance group proposed to increase its dividend.

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