Currencies

China capital curbs reflect buyer’s remorse over market reforms

Last year the reformist head of China’s central bank convinced his Communist party bosses to give market forces a bigger say in setting the renminbi’s daily “reference rate” against the US dollar. In return, Zhou Xiaochuan assured his more conservative party colleagues that the redback would finally secure coveted recognition as an official reserve currency […]

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Banks

Carney: UK is ‘investment banker for Europe’

The governor of the Bank of England has repeated his calls for a “smooth and orderly” UK exit from the EU, saying that a transition out of the bloc will happen, it was just a case of “when and how”. Responding to the BoE’s latest bank stress tests, where lenders overall emerged with more resilient […]

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Currencies

China stock market unfazed by falling renminbi

China’s renminbi slump has companies and individuals alike scrambling to move capital overseas, but it has not damped the enthusiasm of China’s equity investors. The Shanghai Composite, which tracks stocks on the mainland’s biggest exchange, has been gradually rising since May. That is the opposite of what happened in August 2015 after China’s surprise renminbi […]

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Capital Markets

Mnuchin expected to be Trump’s Treasury secretary

Donald Trump has chosen Steven Mnuchin as his Treasury secretary, US media outlets reported on Tuesday, positioning the former Goldman Sachs banker to be the latest Wall Street veteran to receive a top administration post. Mr Mnuchin chairs both Dune Capital Management and Dune Entertainment Partners and has been a longtime business associate of Mr […]

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Banks

Financial system more vulnerable after Trump victory, says BoE

The US election outcome has “reinforced existing vulnerabilities” in the financial system, the Bank of England has warned, adding that the outlook for financial stability in the UK remains challenging. The BoE said on Wednesday that vulnerabilities that were already considered “elevated” have worsened since its last report on financial stability in July, in the […]

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Categorized | Equities

Stronger Carrefour lifts European stocks


Posted on August 29, 2013

Equity markets were broadly higher on a big day for results in Europe, helped by a strong showing for the region’s biggest retailer.

Carrefour, which is the world’s number two retailer after Walmart, reported first-half operating profit up nearly 5 per cent to €766m, broadly in line with expectations, as earnings in its biggest market of France jumped 75.4 per cent.

    “The improvement in France gives much credibility to the bull-case that a great deal of self-help is available to the business and swift recoveries in earnings possible,” said Alastair Johnston at Citigroup.

    Carrefour shares climbed 5.6 per cent to €24.06.

    Zurich Insurance was among the biggest fallers after chief executive Josef Ackermann stepped down following the death of colleague Pierre Wauthier, chief financial officer, this week. Its shares were down 2.5 per cent to SFr228.80.

    The FTSE Eurofirst 300 climbed 0.8 per cent to 1,207.52. In Germany, the number of unemployed rose unexpectedly but, after falling 3.3 per cent in the previous two days, the Xetra Dax pushed 0.5 per cent higher to 8,194.55.

    French media, television and telecoms group Vivendi climbed 1.6 per cent to €15.60 as it added new customers in the second quarter, saw a decreased rate of customers leaving and a slower rate of profit decline than in previous quarters.

    Domestic rival Bouygues, which rose nearly 10 per cent on Wednesday following its first-half results, came back to earth with a 3.8 per cent drop to €24.37.

    Earlier this year, Bouygues entered into talks with Vivendi’s SFR mobile unit about sharing some of their network resources.

    “Bouygues has now outperformed both the European construction and telecoms sector,” said Frederic Boulan at Nomura. “We would be reluctant to chase the shares at these levels considering the recent rally.”

    Shares in beverages producer Pernod Ricard fell 1.9 per cent to €89 after it reported full-year sales growth below market expectations as the slowdown in China took its toll.

    Continental, the German tyre and car parts maker, climbed 3.9 per cent to €116.35 as the motor sector recovered following recent losses.