Despite paring early gains slipping into negative territory midway through the session, European stocks managed to close slightly higher on Monday with investors continuing to react positively to last week’s encouraging data from the U.S.
Worries about slowing growth in China rendered the mood quite cautious and triggered some selling but stocks found some support at lower levels.
A surprise interest rate cut by China’s central bank to provide impetus to the slowing economic growth aided sentiment. The People’s Bank of China reduced its key policy rate for the first time since January. The bank reduced the one-year medium-term lending facility by 10 basis points to 2.75%, and the seven-day reverse repo rate to 2% from 2.1%. The central bank injected CNY 400 billion through one-year MLF and CNY 2 billion via seven-day reverse operations.
The pan European Stoxx 600 climbed 0.34%. The U.K.’s FTSE 100 edged up 0.11%, Germany’s DAX advanced 0.15% and France’s CAC 40 moved up 0.25%. Switzerland’s SMI gained 0.39%.
Among other markets in Europe, Belgium, Denmark, Ireland, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Spain and Sweden ended higher.
Czech Republic, Finland, Greece, Norway and Turkiye closed weak, while Austria and Iceland ended flat.
In the UK market, RS Group rallied more than 5%. AstraZeneca, Admiral Group, IAG, Melrose Industries, Ocado Group, Dechra Pharmaceuticals, Aveva Group, Centrica, B&M European Value Retail, WPP and Hikma Pharmaceuticals gained 1.4 to 3%.
GSK, Rio Tinto, Anglo American Plc, Mondi, Haleon, Glencore and Fresnillo declined sharply.
In the French market, Air France-KLM gained 3.3%, while Safran, Danone, Dassault Systemes, Essilor, Air Liquide and Publicis Groupe moved up 1 to 2%.
Valeo, Faurecia an Veolia ended lower by 2 to 2.5%. ArcelorMittal, BNP Paribas and Societe Generale also closed weak.
In Germany, Deutsche Boerse, HelloFresh, MTU Aero Engines, Symrise, Merck and Volkswagen gained 1 to 3%.
Continental, Zalando, Deutsche Bank, Allianz, Siemens Healthineers and Bayer ended lower by 1 to 2.3%.
In economic news, data from Destatis showed German wholesale price inflation slowed for the third straight month in July but remained at an elevated level due to higher raw material costs.
Wholesale prices registered a double-digit annual increase of 19.5% in July, but slower than the 21.2% increase seen in June.
Switzerland’s producer and import prices increased at a softer pace in July, data from the Federal Statistical Office showed. Producer and import prices increased 6.3% year-on-year in July after a 6.9% growth in June.