Defensives, upbeat earnings lift European shares

Published 12/05/2020 in Business News, Economy & Finance

Defensives, upbeat earnings lift European shares

(Reuters) – European shares edged higher on Tuesday following a clutch of upbeat quarterly earnings reports, but investors remained cautious of a resurgence in new coronavirus cases as hard-hit economies lift lockdowns.

The pan-European STOXX 600 index rose 0.4% by 0726 GMT, with still gains led by telecoms .SXKP, healthcare .SXDP and utilities .SX6P – sectors that investors seek during times of economic uncertainty.

Boosting UK’s FTSE 100 .FTSE, Vodafone’s shares (VOD.L) jumped 3.9% after the world’s second-largest mobile operator met expectations with a 2.6% rise in full-year core earnings and maintained its full-year dividend payout.

German broadcaster ProSiebenSat.1 Media (PSMGn.DE) surged 10.2% to the top of STOXX 600 after U.S. private equity house KKR (KKR.N) revealed that it had acquired a stake of 5.2% in the struggling company.

Gains in Europe followed a risk-averse mood in Asian trading hours after the Chinese city of Wuhan, where the pandemic originated, reported its first new cases since its lockdown was lifted.

(This story has been refiled to fix the case in paragraph 2.)

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