European stocks slip and trading volumes thin as UK market closes for jubilee

Stocks fell following bigger-than-expected US hiring data which revived worries over the outlook for interest rates

European stocks slipped on Friday following stronger-than-expected US hiring data which revived worries over the outlook for interest rates as the Federal Reserve is battling inflation. Trading volumes were thin as the UK market was closed for a public holiday.


The Irish index of shares ended the week in the red, tracking a wider global sell off in shares. Bank of Ireland ended down 1.58 per cent at €6.11, while AIB was almost half a per cent off. Permanent TSB went against that trend and saw its stock rise 5.7 per cent to close at €1.48. Shares in Ryanair slumped 2 per cent to €13.84, giving up some of the gains it made on Thursday on signs of increased oil supply from Opec. Insulation group Kingspan also ended lower after a bumper Thursday, falling by almost 2.3 per cent, while CRH was largely flat at €38.54. Packaging giant Smurfit Kappa ended 0.6 per cent down at €37.68.



The London market remained closed for Queen Elizabeth’s jubilee celebrations.


The Stoxx Europe 600 Index slipped 0.3 per cent on Friday. Tech stocks weighed on the gauge following a report that Tesla chief executive Elon Musk said the electric carmaker needs to cut staff and pause hiring, fuelling worries about an economic slowdown. The European stock benchmark ended the week lower than where it started after posting declines in midweek. Stocks have been volatile this year as hawkish central banks, rising costs for companies and the war in Ukraine fuelled a sell-off. The Stoxx Europe 600 is trading at about 12.6 times estimated earnings for the coming year, below its average of 14.5 for the past decade.

Among individual movers, Rheinmetall gained after Warburg Research raised its rating on the stock to buy from hold amid Germany’s planned defence fund and a stronger outlook for the firm’s revenue.

Meanwhile, Aperam, the stainless steel producer spun off from ArcelorMittal, rose after confirming it is considering a combination with Spanish rival Acerinox, which slid.


US stock indices fell on Friday as a solid jobs report supported the view that the Federal Reserve would continue on its aggressive policy tightening path to cool decades-high inflation, with shares of Apple and Tesla weighing the most.

Ten of the 11 major S&P sectors declined, with consumer discretionary losing 2.5 per cent and technology falling 2.2 per cent. The energy sector was an outlier with a gain of 1.2 per cent. Volatility has gripped Wall Street in recent weeks as investors debated if the markets hit a bottom against the backdrop of some hawkish comments from Fed officials and data suggesting that inflation may have peaked.

The blue-chip Dow has fallen 9.3 per cent so far this year, the benchmark S&P 500 has lost 13.6 per cent and the tech-heavy Nasdaq has shed 23.1 per cent, with rate-sensitive growth stocks bearing the brunt of the sell-off.

Apple slid 3.6 per cent, hit by a bearish brokerage comment and a report that EU countries and lawmakers were set to agree on a common charging port for mobile phones, tablets and headphones on June 7th, a proposal that has been fiercely criticised by the iPhone maker.

Tesla dropped 8.1 per cent after chief executive Elon Musk, in an email to executives, said he has a “super bad feeling” about the economy and needs to cut about 10 per cent of jobs at the electric carmaker.

— Additional reporting: Bloomberg, Reuters

Ciara O'Brien

Ciara O'Brien

Ciara O'Brien is an Irish Times business and technology journalist