Trade talk optimism helps European shares cling onto October highs
19/02/2019 at 08:36
(For a live blog on European stocks, type LIVE/ in an Eikon news window)
LONDON, Feb 19 (Reuters) - European shares edged down slightly on
Tuesday at the open but clung to highs not seen since October as
optimism about Sino/U.S. trade talks helped maintain morale despite a
few earnings disappointments such as HSBC's and BHP Group's.
At 0829 GMT, the STOXX 600 was down 0.2 percent with most European
bourses close to flat.
A new round of talks between the U.S. and China to resolve their
trade war will take place in Washington on Tuesday.
Among the stocks in the red and pulling indexes down was HSBC ,
which reported a disappointing annual profit as higher costs and a
stocks rout chipped away at its trading businesses.
Bank of America Merrill Lynch downgraded its rating for the stock
to 'neutral' following the release of its results, saying there is
"limited upside" for the share price.
The banking sector fell 0.8 percent.
The session's top gainer was Germany's Wirecard , up 7.7
percent. On Monday, Germany's financial watchdog banned
"short" selling of the stock due to volatility following
reports in the Financial Times which are now the subject of an
investigation by German authorities.
Still in Germany, HeidelbergCement jumped 4.4 percent as it
shrugged off concerns about trade wars and a disorderly Brexit to
forecast higher demand for cement this year.
(Julien Ponthus, Editing by Helen Reid)
((firstname.lastname@example.org; 02075426189; Reuters Messaging: email@example.com))