Luxury stocks sparkle in tepid European trading as U.S.-China trade talks loom
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LONDON, Jan 30 (Reuters) - Luxury stocks were a silver lining for European markets on Wednesday after strong results from LVMH LVMH.PA reassured investors, while looming U.S.-China trade talks kept trading muted and some earnings disappointments weighed.
Europe's STOXX 600 .STOXX fell 0.2 percent in early deals, with Germany's trade-sensitive DAX .GDAXI down 0.4 percent and France's CAC 40 .FCHI up 0.3 percent.
Britain's FTSE 100 .FTSE jumped 0.9 percent thanks to a weaker pound boosting London-listed multinational exporters.
LVMH shares jumped 6.5 percent after upbeat results from the luxury conglomerate, which said it is "cautiously" confident as fourth-quarter sales held up despite fears of a China slowdown. HRMS.PA , Richemont CFR.S , Gucci owner Kering PRTP.PA , Moncler MONC.MI and Burberry BRBY.L were among the top boosts to the STOXX 600, rising 1.8 to 3.8 percent. Italy's Salvatore Ferragamo SFER.MI , which reported a drop in sales, climbed 2.7 percent as the LVMH beat lifted the luxury sector. conglomerate Siemens SIEGn.DE fell 1.2 percent after reporting weaker-than-expected industrial profit for its first quarter due to profits at its power business plunging. in French IT consulting firm Atos ATOS.PA surged 10 percent to top the STOXX 600 index. The company said it would distribute 23.4 percent of shares in its subsidiary Worldline to shareholders.
Atos peer Alten LTEN.PA also gained 6.1 percent after it reported full-year revenue rose in 2018. pharma giant Novartis NOVN.S was the biggest drag on the STOXX, down 2.5 percent after analysts said its 2019 earnings growth guidance was disappointing. drug ingredients maker Lonza LONN.S tumbled 6.9 percent after it said Chief Executive Richard Ridinger was retiring and reported sales below expectations. telecoms firm KPN KPN.AS was another loser after results, falling 3.8 percent after it reported earnings that missed estimates and guided to lower cash flow for this year, and its shares are set to fall 2 percent.
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