European stocks rebound at end of volatile week

The pan-European STOXX 600 index rose 0.6% in early trading with FTSE also higher

French food group Danone slipped 1.8 per cent after Goldman Sachs downgraded the stock to “sell”

French food group Danone slipped 1.8 per cent after Goldman Sachs downgraded the stock to “sell”

 

European shares rose on Friday, as investors picked up beaten down stocks after rising inflation worries led to sharp losses earlier this week.

The pan-European STOXX 600 index rose 0.6 per cent in early trading, with travel and leisure and retail stocks leading the gains. The benchmark was still on course for a 1 per cent weekly drop, its worst since late February.

Global markets were rattled this week after a rally in commodity prices as well as quickening US inflation raised fears about interest rate hikes.

Italy’s Banco BPM rose 2.2 per cent after Deutsche Bank upgraded the stock to “buy”, saying the lender’s “speculative appeal” could increase in the next few months.

French food group Danone slipped 1.8 per cent after Goldman Sachs downgraded the stock to “sell”, saying weaker demographic trends, particularly in China, will weigh on its specialised nutrition business.

British shares rose on Friday, helped by gains in heavyweight financial and consumer staples stocks, while Sanne Group topped the mid-cap index after rejecting a $1.90 billion buyout proposal.

The blue-chip index rose 0.7 per cent, with software company Sage Group adding 3 per cent after reporting a better-than-expected 4.4 per cent rise in first-half organic recurring revenue and forecasting growth for the year to be toward the top end of its 3 per cent to 5 per cent range. Banks and large dollar earning consumer staples companies were among the biggest boost to the index.

Spirits maker Diageo rose 1.8 per cent after HSBC raised its price target on the stock.

The domestically focused mid-cap FTSE 250 index advanced 0.8 per cent. Alternative asset and corporate services firm Sanne Group jumped 27.7 per cent after it rejected private-equity firm Cinven’s £1.35 billion buyout offer.

- Reuters