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Europe close: Stocks dip amid coronavirus worries, Irish stocks lag behind

By Alexander Bueso

Date: Monday 10 Feb 2020

Europe close: Stocks dip amid coronavirus worries, Irish stocks lag behind

(Sharecast News) - Stocks across the Continent finished on a mixed note with Irish and German stocks in focus amid the latest and unexpected political headlines coming out of each of those countries.
With about half the votes from the Irish general election at the weekend counted, it appeared that Sinn Fein had won the popular vote, meaning that it was likely to have a role in any coalition government.

Meanwhile, in Germany the head of the CDU party, Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer, Chancellor Angela Merkel's annointed successor, stepped down after politicians from her own ranks voted with the far-right AfD in the state of Thuringia during the previous week.

News that the number of cases of the new Chinese coronavirus had surpassed 40,000 also dampened investor sentiment while weighing on crude oil futures.

By the end of trading, the benchmark Stoxx 600 had turned around to rise 0.07% to 424.64, alongside a 0.15% dip to 13,494.03 for the German Dax, while Milan's FTSE Mibtel was up 0.12% at 24,507.70.

Ireland's ISEQ All-Share index however retreated 1.20% to 7,065.53 and out on the Stoxx 600, shares in Bank of Ireland Group and AIB Group were among the worst performers.

Sinn Fein favoured maintaining the state's stake in Bank of Ireland Group and had campaigned in favour of a wealth tax.

Tullow Oil was also near the bottom of the pile as Brent crude oil futures added to recent losses and fell 2.0% to $53.40 a barrel on the ICE.

Shares of Carl Zeiss Meditec, were also out of favour, despite the company having posted a 18.1% jump in first quarter earnings before interest and taxes to reach €56.8m.

Nonetheless, stock in the optical systems manufacturer remained near its record high.

Irish property stocks such as Glenveagh Properties and Cairn Homes were also lower given Sinn Fein's support for a freeze on rents.

To take note of too, overnight the head of the World Health Organisation, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, said he was worried by instances of the virus in people who hadn't traveled to China, which could be a possible indication of more widespread transmission in other countries.

The toll on the Asian giant's economy was also rising, with Neil Shearing at Capital Economics slashing his forecast for the year-on-year rate of economic growth in China from 5.0% to 3.0%.

Linked to the above, analysts at Citi had estimated that each one percentage point "swing" in Chinese growth could shave 0.2 points off growth in Germany, Central Europe and Italy.

On a more upbeat note, the Sentix institute's gauge of euro area investor sentiment dipped from 7.6 for January to 5.2 in February (consensus: 5.9).

"This is the first survey in the Eurozone to fully reflect the coronavirus-scare, and it is showing few signs of a setback," Pantheon Macroeconomics's Claus Vistesen wrote in a research note to clients.

The latest print on industrial production in Italy however made for grim reading, with ISTAT reporting that it shrank at a month-on-month pace of 2.6% (consensus: -0.6%).

CAC 40 - Risers

BNP Paribas (BNP) 51.83 +2.82%

ArcelorMittal SA (MT) 16.35 +2.75%

Safran (SAF) 150.25 +1.80%

Bouygues (EN) 37.34 +1.69%

L'Oreal (OR) 270.70 +1.08%

Sodexo (SW) 97.26 +1.08%

Credit Agricole (ACA) 13.44 +0.94%

Publicis Groupe Sa (PUB) 40.55 +0.82%

Michelin (ML) 106.85 +0.38%

Hermes International (RMS) 695.40 +0.35%

CAC 40 - Fallers

TECHNIPFMC (FTI) 15.56 -3.65%

Dassault Systemes (DSY) 154.85 -2.88%

Renault (RNO) 35.06 -2.87%

Peugeot (UG) 19.40 -2.41%

Accor (AC) 38.03 -1.66%

Capgemini (CAP) 116.20 -1.48%

Total (FP) 45.26 -1.39%

Carrefour (CA) 15.52 -1.18%

Kering (KER) 565.70 -1.10%

Valeo (FR) 27.28 -1.05%


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