European stocks rebound from biggest drop in a month

April 20, 2011 - 0:0

European stocks rose, rebounding from the biggest drop in a month, as results from LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton SA to SKF AB and Novartis AG beat estimates. Asian shares retreated and U.S. index futures were little changed.

LVMH, the world’s largest luxury-goods maker, climbed 4.6 percent after first-quarter sales topped analysts’ projections. SKF, the biggest maker of ball bearings, rallied 7.2 percent after reporting record quarterly profit. Novartis, a Basel, Switzerland-based drugmaker, advanced the most in four months.
The Stoxx Europe 600 Index gained 0.7 percent to 274.97 at 1:10 p.m. in London. The gauge tumbled 1.7 percent on Monday as Standard & Poor’s Ratings Service cut its long-term sovereign credit outlook for the U.S., the world’s largest economy, to negative from stable. The benchmark measure of European equities has still climbed 4.9 percent from this year’s low on March 16.
“Earnings have been of good quality,” said Jerome Forneris, who helps manage $11 billion at Banque Martin Maurel in Marseille. “If the whole earnings season is like this, we hope the market will make that its focus. This is good news, but in a calmer environment, the market would be gaining more. The market still is timid.”
Of the 16 companies in the Stoxx 600 that have reported earnings since April 11, 11 have beaten estimates for per-share profit, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
----------------Asian, U.S. shares
The MSCI Asia Pacific Index dropped 1.1 percent on Tuesday to the lowest level this month. Standard & Poor’s 500 Index futures rose 0.2 percent as Goldman Sachs Group Inc. reported a first- quarter profit that surpassing analyst estimates.
European services and manufacturing growth unexpectedly accelerated in April, suggesting the economy is weathering surging energy costs and tougher austerity measures. A composite index based on a survey of euro-area purchasing managers in both industries rose to 57.8 from 57.6 in March, London-based Markit Economics said on Tuesday. A reading above 50 indicates growth.
A gain in housing starts in March probably failed to make up for ground lost the prior month as U.S. homebuilders continued to struggle almost two years into the economic recovery, economists said before a report due at 8:30 a.m. in Washington. Work began on 520,000 houses at an annual pace, up 8.6 percent from the prior month, according to the median estimate of 77 economists surveyed by Bloomberg.
-----------------Greek yields
Greece sold 1.625 billion euros ($2.33 billion) of 13-week Treasury bills on Tuesday as growing speculation the country will need to restructure its debt pushed bond yields to euro-era records. Greece’s two-year bond yield exceeded 20 percent for a second day, even as officials denied the nation was preparing a restructuring.
LVMH advanced 4.6 percent to 114.75 euros, leading gains in luxury-goods shares. The company said first-quarter sales rose 17 percent, topping analysts’ estimates, as wealthy customers bought more Givenchy handbags and Hublot watches.
Burberry Group Plc rallied 5.7 percent to 1,211 pence. The U.K.’s largest luxury retailer reported fiscal fourth-quarter sales that beat estimates and said adjusted full-year profit will be near the top end of market expectations.
Christian Dior SA climbed 3.9 percent to 100.95 euros. Cie. Financiere Richemont SA, world’s largest jewelry maker, added 4 percent to 52.4 francs.
SKF surged 7.2 percent to 188.30 kronor. The maker of ball bearings said first-quarter net income rose to 1.57 billion kronor ($250 million) from 1.03 billion kronor a year earlier. Analysts on average expected net income of 1.43 billion kronor, a survey of 17 estimates compiled by Bloomberg showed.
--------------Novartis, Daimler
Novartis gained 3.7 percent to 50.4 Swiss francs, the largest increase since December. The drugmaker’s first-quarter profit fell 6 percent to $2.77 billion as sales of influenza vaccine slumped following the end of the flu pandemic last year. Analysts had forecast earnings of $2.57 billion, the average of eight estimates compiled by Bloomberg.
Daimler AG (DAI) advanced 1.4 percent to 49.29 euros as auto- industry shares led gains in the Stoxx 600. The carmaker sees “significant” growth in China’s car market, with annual industry sales of 20 million to 30 million vehicles “within reach” over the next five to 10 years, Chief Executive Officer Dieter Zetsche said in Shanghai on Tuesday.
Faurecia SA advanced 4.5 percent to 25.80 euros. Europe’s biggest maker of car interiors had first-quarter revenue of 3.96 billion euros, compared with 3.2 billion euros a year earlier.
Zodiac Aerospace SA increased 5.4 percent to 52.87 euros. Europe’s biggest maker of aircraft seats had first-half net income of 114.3 million euros, up from 44.1 million euros a year earlier.
Electricite de France SA jumped 5.8 percent to 28.18 euros after the French government matched the price requested by the utility for the sale of its nuclear power to competitors.
TeliaSonera AB retreated 1.2 percent to 49.18 kronor. Sweden’s largest phone company said first-quarter net income declined to 4.65 billion kronor from 4.72 billion kronor a year earlier. Analysts on average had forecast net income of 4.81 billion, a survey of 14 estimates compiled by Bloomberg showed.
(Source: Bloomberg)