Europe’s benchmark stock index managed to squeeze out a small gain after a choppy session on Friday, with an advance for French media company Vivendi SA and U.K. drug giant AstraZeneca PLC helping to push the benchmark higher for the week.
The Stoxx Europe 600 index /zigman2/quotes/210599654/delayed XX:SXXP +0.17% ended up 0.3% at 395.63, with telecom and health care doing the heavy lifting.
Investors had a fresh round of corporate updates to consider on Friday, as well as economic data. Germany’s quarterly gross domestic product revved up, but industrial production declined in the eurozone in March.
The pan-European benchmark on Thursday fell 0.6%, pulling back from a 21-month high.
The index gained 0.3% for the week, which kicked off Monday with a small decline in European bourses after centrist and independent Emmanuel Macron won France’s presidential election on Sunday. European equities had pushed higher ahead of the vote on signs Macron would defeat far-right candidate Marine Le Pen, with French shares hitting a nine-year high.
“European stocks continue to hold their ground, supported by a record $6 billion injected into European stock funds this past week,” said Jasper Lawler, senior market analyst, in a note Friday afternoon.
France’s CAC 40 /zigman2/quotes/210597958/delayed FR:PX1 -0.21% has jumped more than 11% this year, and the Stoxx Europe 600 has bulked up more than 9%.
Movers: The CAC 40 ended 0.4% higher at 5,405.42 on Friday. The best performance came from Vivendi /zigman2/quotes/202179234/delayed FR:VIV +1.61% as its shares popped up 4.7% after the company offered to buy a €2.36 billion stake in advertising group Havas SA from Vivendi’s own chairman, Vincent Bolloré. Havas shares surged 9.2%.
But the CAC’s rise was limited by an 8% fall in shares of constituent ArcelorMittal SA /zigman2/quotes/202790215/composite MT -1.37% even as the steelmaker’s first-quarter net profit more than doubled to $1 billion.
Elsewhere, Cie. Financière Richemont SA /zigman2/quotes/203783259/delayed CH:CFR +1.32% slid 5% after the Swiss luxury-goods brand behind Cartier and Montblanc logged a 46% fall in 12-month profit.
Thyssenkrupp AG shares /zigman2/quotes/207409543/delayed DE:TKA +0.58% fell 4.1% after the German industrial conglomerate swung to a second-quarter net loss, pressured by the sale of its steel operations in Brazil.
AstraZeneca PLC /zigman2/quotes/203048482/delayed UK:AZN +0.44% /zigman2/quotes/200304487/composite AZN +0.57% climbed 9% as the company posted positive, late-stage study results for cancer treatment Imfinzi. That was the biggest one-day percentage gain for the company since April 2014.
Also in the U.K., shares of Petrofac Ltd. /zigman2/quotes/202340229/delayed UK:PFC -1.83% tumbled 14% after U.K. authorities said they have launched an investigation into the activities of the oil services company on suspicion of “bribery, corruption and money laundering.”
Data: German economic activity accelerated in the first quarter, with GDP higher by 0.6%, or 2.4% in annualized terms.
Eurozone industrial production in March fell 0.1% from the previous month, according to Eurostat. The FactSet consensus estimate was for a rise of 0.3%.
Other indexes: Germany’s DAX 30 index /zigman2/quotes/210597999/delayed DX:DAX -0.07% gained 0.5% to 12,770.41. In London, the FTSE 100 /zigman2/quotes/210598409/delayed UK:UKX +0.02% rose 0.7% to a record close of 7,435.39 as the pound /zigman2/quotes/210561263/realtime/sampled GBPUSD +0.3890% stayed below $1.29 against the dollar.