Daimler and ArcelorMittal Outperform on Earnings Results
LONDON -- European stocks have managed to curb this week's slide today, making headway as a number of decent earnings results help give direction. This came as a policymaker in the European Central Bank said there was an argument to give the European Stability Mechanism a banking license, in effect allowing it to borrow limitlessly from the ECB to expand funds as needed.
Gains have been muted somewhat, however, after the U.K. reported GDP figures that showed the country was in the midst of its worst double-dip recession in 50 years. Meanwhile, eurozone peripheral countries are continuing to see bond yields near record highs. Despite this, however, the Spanish IBEX (INDEX: ^IBEX) is one of the best-performing benchmark indexes today, up 2%.
As always, the following price moves are based on this morning's European trading.
Corporate earnings results have been leading direction today, with the auto industry outperforming after German carmaker Daimler (NASDAQOTH: DAIC.PK) jumped more than 5.5% after reporting better-than-expected sales and revenue, although profits stagnated due to increased investment.
Elsewhere, ArcelorMittal (NYS: MT) is trading 3.2% higher Wednesday after it reported that EBITDA fell to $2.4 billion in the second quarter, which was better than analyst estimates. The company also said second-half earnings would be similar to the first half, despite the fact that its South African arm saw H1 earnings drop 84%.
Specialist publisher Wolters Kluwer (NASDAQOTH: WTKWY.PK) is seeing some of the largest gains in Europe today, up 9.4% in Amsterdam after the company expanded a share buyback program by 35 million euros. This follows the company's report that first-half sales jumped 7.4% year on year to 1.74 billion euros, while revenue grew at an expectation-beating rate thanks to North American demand.
On the downside, Portuguese food retailer Jeronimo Martins (NASDAQOTH: JRONY.PK) is suffering today, down 4.5% after its earnings result missed analyst estimates. The company said net income climbed 5.6% in the first half of the year to 151.9 million euros, compared with estimates in the 159 million euro region. Jeronimo also said it expects EBITDA to be at or just below the 2011 level this year, while its Polish unit is likely to miss its goal of double-digit growth due to the economic slowdown.
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