European Stocks Little Changed Before Confidence Report


European stocks were little changed as investors awaited data on consumer confidence in the euro area. U.S. futures were little changed, while Asian shares fell.

BNP Paribas SA (BNP) lost 1.7 percent after a person familiar with the matter said U.S. authorities are seeking more than $5 billion to settle investigations related to sanctions. A.P. Moeller-Maersk A/S’s A shares rose 3.1 percent after Denmark’s biggest company boosted its outlook for 2014 underlying profit.

The Stoxx Europe 600 Index added less than 0.1 percent to 338.37 at 8:52 a.m. in London. The benchmark has fallen 0.2 percent this week, as AstraZeneca Plc (AZN) slumped after it rejected Pfizer Inc.’s increased takeover offer, and Vodafone Group Plc slid to its lowest price since February 2013 after forecasting profit will drop this year. Standard & Poor’s 500 Index futures added 0.2 percent today. The MSCI Asia Pacific Index lost 0.1 percent, declining for a fourth day.

The volume of shares changing hands in Stoxx 600-listed companies was 16 percent greater than the average of the last 30 days for this time of day, data compiled by Bloomberg show.

A report from the European Commission at 4 p.m. in Brussels may show a gauge of euro-area consumer confidence rose to minus 8.3 in May, the highest level since October 2007, from minus 8.6 last month, according to the median estimate of 23 economists in a Bloomberg survey.

Data at 9:30 a.m. in London may show U.K. retail sales including auto fuel gained 0.4 percent in April, following a 0.1 percent increase the prior month, according to the median of 20 economist projections in a Bloomberg survey.

Bank Minutes

The Bank of England releases minutes of its May meeting at 9:30 a.m. in London, while the Federal Reserve publishes minutes of its April policy meeting after the close of European markets.

BNP Paribas lost 1.7 percent to 50.79 euros. U.S. authorities are seeking more than $5 billion from France’s largest bank to settle federal and state investigations into the lender’s dealings with sanctioned countries including Sudan and Iran, according to a person familiar with the matter. Discussions are continuing and the final number could change, the person said.

Volvo AB declined 1.3 percent to 96.20 Swedish kronor. The world’s second-largest truckmaker said that truck deliveries in April fell 1 percent from a year earlier to 16,354 units.

Maersk Advances

Maersk’s A shares rose 3.1 percent to 13,000 Danish kroner. The owner of the world’s largest container-shipping line boosted its outlook for 2014 underlying profit to about $4 billion from a previous prediction of about $3.6 billion. First-quarter earnings before interest and taxes rose to $2.24 billion, beating the $2.09 billion median estimate of analysts surveyed by SME Direkt.

Britvic Plc (BVIC) rallied 5.1 percent to 730 pence. The maker of Robinsons fruit drinks reported first-half revenue of 670.7 million pounds ($1.13 billion), exceeding the 657.8 million pounds estimated by analysts. Ebit reached 59 million pounds, beating forecasts for 57.6 million pounds.

DCC Plc jumped 5 percent to 3,259 pence. The Irish distribution company posted full-year adjusted earnings per share of 191.2 pence, surpassing the 185 pence projected by analysts.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here