By Steve Goldstein
Mining shares jumped on Thursday, getting a lift as copper futures rallied while broader European stock markets struggled for direction.
Rio Tinto /zigman2/quotes/208934945/delayed UK:RIO -1.76% shares rose 4%, as other miners including KGHM Polska Miedz PL:KGH +1.28% , BHP Group /zigman2/quotes/203323256/delayed UK:BHP -1.94% , and Antofagasta /zigman2/quotes/200173667/delayed UK:ANTO -0.72% gained, with copper futures /zigman2/quotes/210054311/delayed HG00 +0.33% surging nearly 4%. The copper contract on the London Metal Exchange touched its highest level since April 2012.
The broader Stoxx Europe 600 /zigman2/quotes/210599654/delayed XX:SXXP -1.97% wobbled between gains and losses, losing 0.1% in midmorning trade after two days of declines. Stocks are beginning to struggle, with the yield on the benchmark U.S. 10-year Treasury rising on hopes the global economy will reflate.
“Momentum has started to fade as U.S. equities were slowed by the tech sector and 10 year Treasury yields /zigman2/quotes/211347051/realtime BX:TMUBMUSD10Y +0.62% , and the dollar /zigman2/quotes/210598269/delayed DXY +0.16% is being boosted by positive U.S. retail sales figures,” said Rony Nehme, chief market analyst at Squared Financial.
U.S. stock futures /zigman2/quotes/209948968/delayed ES00 -0.35% were weaker heading into Thursday’s session, which will feature retailer Walmart’s /zigman2/quotes/207374728/composite WMT -0.90% earnings, a busy slate of economic releases, and a congressional hearing on videogames retailer GameStop /zigman2/quotes/203755179/composite GME +2.58% .
Traders in Europe digested a busy slate of earnings.
Airbus /zigman2/quotes/208224336/delayed FR:AIR -2.50% shares fell 4%, as the European aircraft maker forecast delivering the same number of aircraft and break-even free cash flow. It is targeting an adjusted earnings before interest and tax of €2 billion, after earning €1.7 billion on the same measure in 2020 and €6.95 billion in 2019.
Smith & Nephew /zigman2/quotes/207176500/delayed UK:SN -1.20% , the medical equipment maker, fell 5% as the company said its profit margins for 2021 will be worse than 2019, due to reduced production volumes, increased research and development investments, acquisitions and foreign-exchange moves.
Varta /zigman2/quotes/207924135/delayed XE:VAR1 -1.86% , the automotive battery company, dropped 10% amid reporting a 145% rise in adjusted operating profit on a 140% rise in revenue for 2020 and deciding to pay a special dividend of €2.50 per share. Varta stock nonetheless has jumped 67% over the last 12 months.
Temenos /zigman2/quotes/207982992/delayed CH:TEMN -0.96% shares jumped 14%, as the Swiss enterprise-software maker forecast revenue growth between 10% and 15% through 2025, ahead of its capital markets day.