European shares rose on Friday to post their best day in more than a week, as a surprise bounce in China’s manufacturing activity overshadowed conflicting tones surrounding a possible trade deal between the US and China.
The pan-European STOXX 600 rose 0.68 percent to 399.43 points, up 0.4 percent for the week.
China-exposed German shares on Friday rose 0.4 percent, while mining stocks led gains among sub-sectors following upbeat data from the world’s top metals consumer.
China’s factory activity last month unexpectedly expanded at the fastest pace in more than two years as new export orders rose and plants ramped up production, a private business survey showed on Friday.
“The numbers are good, given it came ahead of expectations and expansion is always a welcome,” said David Madden, an analyst at CMC Markets in London.
The latest data are in contrast to an official survey published on Thursday, which showed China’s factory activity shrank for the sixth straight month last month.
“The Caixin numbers do seem to be more impartial than official numbers from Beijing, so it is a welcome change, although US-China trade is going to be the main focus for now,” Madden said.
Conflicting signals on trade gave investors reason for caution after a Bloomberg report said Chinese officials have doubts about whether it is possible to reach a comprehensive long-term trade deal with Washington and US President Donald Trump.
However, Trump later said the two countries would soon announce a site where a “phase one” trade deal will be signed after Chile canceled a planned summit set for the middle of this month that was to be the venue for a signing.
Danish stocks outperformed their European peers, boosted by transport and logistics services company DSV Panalpina A/S, which gained 7.4 percent after reporting strong third-quarter results, despite challenging conditions in the freight market.
Drugmaker Novo Nordisk A/S rose 3.6 percent after raising its sales outlook for this year on the back of its new drugs for type II diabetes and obesity.
Denmark’s biggest lender Danske Bank A/S slid 4 percent after narrowing its annual profit outlook as the tainted Scandinavian lender grapples to restore trust after being involved in one of the world’s biggest money laundering scandals.
That pulled the banking sector lower for a 3.6 percent weekly loss after sour results from Deutsche Bank AG and Credit Suisse Group AG earlier in the week.
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