European Shares Edge Higher On Stimulus Hopes

European stocks advanced on Friday, with upbeat U.S. economic data released overnight and the prospect of further fiscal stimulus helping underpin sentiment. The upside was capped by weak regional data released this morning.

German factory orders were down 1.9 percent month-on-month in December, reversing a 2.7 percent rise in November, data from Destatis revealed.

U.K. house prices fell 0.3 percent in January from a month earlier as the market appeared to lose momentum following a stimulus-fueled surge last year, mortgage lender Halifax said.

The pan European Stoxx 600 edged up 0.3 percent to 410.94 after rising 0.6 percent on Thursday.

The German DAX inched up 0.1 percent and France’s CAC 40 index climbed as much as 0.9 percent on solid earnings while the U.K.’s FTSE 100 was up 0.2 percent.

Vinci surged 5.6 percent. After posting disappointing FY20 results, the French construction and infrastructure company said it expects contracting business to achieve growth in business levels and earnings.

Pharmaceutical company Sanofi rose over 2 percent after reporting stronger-than-expected results for the fourth quarter.

BNP Paribas gained nearly 3 percent after the lender reported a smaller-than-expected drop in fourth-quarter profit.

Carlsberg jumped 2.5 percent. The Copenhagen-based brewer proposed a bigger payout for shareholders after posting a forecast-beating full-year net profit.

Aurubis AG shares fell 2.5 percent. The non-ferrous metals provider backed its FY21 EBT view after reporting a rise in first-quarter consolidated net income.

Beazley shares soared 13 percent. After plunging to an annual loss, the British insurance company said it was confident of returning to profit in 2021.

Signature Aviation lost 2.4 percent. The former owner of London’s Gatwick Airport has joined forces with Blackstone and Bill Gates’ Cascade to bid for the aviation company.

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