Sun, May 07, 2017 - Page 14 News List

European stocks advance on French election odds


European stocks on Friday rose for a second day as strength in the US jobs market bolstered optimism that the global economy is improving and speculation mounted that the centrist candidate will win France’s presidential election.

The STOXX Europe 600 added 0.7 percent at the close, after falling as much as 0.4 percent earlier in the day.

Energy shares advanced as oil rebounded, while mining shares jumped the most in seven weeks as metal prices climbed.

The STOXX 600 is up 1.9 percent this week, boosted by robust earnings and speculation that centrist Emmanuel Macron will win today’s final French presidential vote.

Commodity producers in the STOXX 600 jumped 2.6 percent, halting their longest stretch of declines in more than a month.

Oil rebounded after earlier losses that took it below US$44 per barrel. The decline in crude prices in the past month helped turn energy shares into the worst performers among STOXX 600 groups this year.

Following the strong US payrolls data, traders are pricing in a 100 percent chance the US Federal Reserve will raise interest rates in June, Fed fund futures show.

Some shares were active after reporting results. JCDecaux SA slid 4.1 percent after its second-quarter outlook was deemed cautious by some analysts.

Pearson PLC surged 12 percent after announcing further cost cuts and a strategic review of its troubled US education publishing business.

In the run-up to today’s French vote, Macron gained 3 points in Elabe poll, to 62 percent versus 38 percent for Marine Le Pen.

France’s CAC 40 Index climbed 1.1 percent, extending a nine-year high.

Marks & Spencer Group PLC added 5 percent after naming former Asda supermarket boss Archie Norman as its new chairman.

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