European Shares Inch Higher On China Exports Data

European stocks rose on Thursday as China exports data for April exceeded expectations and bleak U.S. data released overnight prompted calls for more government spending.

European Central Bank Vice President Luis de Guindos called for greater cooperation in fiscal policy from the region’s political leaders to support the recovery.

Stating the euro zone economy is facing a deep recession, he told the European Parliament’s committee on economic and monetary affairs that “it is thus vital that the fiscal response to this crisis is sufficiently forceful, in all parts of the euro area.”

Earlier today, the Bank of England maintained its key interest rate and refrained from unveiling additional quantitative easing, despite the coronavirus pandemic taking its toll on the economy.

The fall in output has been large and consumer spending has declined sharply, but the disruption will be temporary, the bank noted.

Elsewhere, Norway’s central bank has cut its key policy interest rate to a record-low 0.0 percent from 0.25 percent, marking the third rate cut in less than two months.

The pan European Stoxx 600 rose 0.8 percent to 336.91 after declining 0.4 percent on Wednesday.

The German DAX gained over 1 percent, while France’s CAC 40 index and the U.K.’s FTSE 100 were up around 0.8 percent each.

Zalando shares soared 11 percent after the online retailer said it expects
double-digit growth in 2020 on the back of rising consumer demand.

Biopharmaceutical company MorphoSys jumped 12 percent after reaffirming its financial guidance for 2020.

HeidelbergCement declined 1.2 percent after the company warned it expects a
“significant dent” in 2020 profits due subdued construction activity in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.

Sportswear firm Puma surged 6 percent after its first-quarter sales declined less than analysts had feared.

Air France-KLM shares slumped 4.2 percent. After posting a sharply higher first-quarter loss, the airline said that demand could take “several years” to recover.

British lenders gained ground after a Bank of England report said an emergency “desktop” stress test showed that top banks and building societies can withstand the anticipated economic fallout from the pandemic.

HSBC Holdings rose 1.1 percent, Barclays advanced 1.8 percent and Standard Chartered rallied 3 percent.

Miners climbed after China’s exports saw a surprise 3.5 percent rise in April despite the global impact of the coronavirus pandemic. Anglo American rallied 3.5 percent, Antofagasta rose 1.4 percent and Glencore added 1.3 percent.

Branded clothing company Superdry soared 10 percent. The company said it is exploring financing options regarding additional liquidity.

Rolls Royce Holdings slumped 4.5 percent. The aero-engine maker said it expects to deliver just 250 widebody aircraft engines this year, compared with its previous estimate of 450.

British Airways-owner IAG lost 3.4 percent after saying it tapped U.K. government-backed loans to boost liquidity.

Telecoms group BT plunged 8 percent as it suspended dividend until 2021-22 and pulled its financial outlook.

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