Euro­pean shares close to one-month high

Malta Independent - - FINANCIAL -

On Fri­day Euro­pean shares hov­ered near a one-month high, set for their long­est streak of weekly gains since July.

The Stoxx Europe 600 In­dex rose less than 0.1 per­cent at 10:47 a.m. in Lon­don, tak­ing its ad­vance for the week to 0.8 per­cent, as the num­ber of its shares chang­ing hands was more than 40 per­cent lower than the 30day av­er­age. Acte­lion Ltd. led a rally in health-care shares, surg­ing 13 per­cent af­ter peo­ple fa­mil­iar with the mat­ter said John­son & John­son has ap­proached the Swiss drug­maker about a po­ten­tial takeover.

On Fri­day, de­fen­sive com­pa­nies climbed, with con­sumer stocks lead­ing the Stoxx 600. Lindt & Spru­engli AG and Nes­tle SA gained more than 1.7 per­cent, send­ing the Swiss Mar­ket In­dex up 1 per­cent, the big­gest ad­vance among western-Euro­pean mar­kets.

Con­sumers and busi­nesses in­creased their spend­ing in the third quar­ter as the U.K. econ­omy reg­is­tered a re­silient per­for­mance fol­low­ing the Brexit vote.

House­hold spend­ing rose 0.7 per­cent from the sec­ond quar­ter and busi­ness in­vest­ment in­creased 0.9 per­cent, the Of­fice for Na­tional Statis­tics said on Fri­day. Growth over­all was un­re­vised at 0.5 per­cent, with trade pro­vid­ing the strong­est con­tri­bu­tion. A sep­a­rate re­port from the Con­fed­er­a­tion of Bri­tish In­dus­try showed re­tail sales grew at their fastest an­nual pace in more than a year in Novem­ber.

Asian stocks headed for the first weekly ad­vance this month as a weaker yen spurred gains in Ja­panese shares and op­ti­mism grew that the U.S. econ­omy will be able to cope with higher bor­row­ing costs. The MSCI Asia Pa­cific In­dex rose 0.7 per­cent to 135.85 as of 4:10 p.m. in Hong Kong, with com­mod­ity pro­duc­ers surg­ing the most this week among in­dus­try groups. Ja­panese shares stretched their rally to lev­els un­seen since the Bank of Ja­pan in­tro­duced neg­a­tive in­ter­est rates in Jan­uary.

This ar­ti­cle was compiled by BOV As­set Man­age­ment Lim­ited, a mem­ber of the BOV Group. BOV As­set Man­age­ment,TG Com­plex, Suite 2, Level 3, Brew­ery Str., Mriehel BKR 3000. Email: in­foas­set­man­age­ In­ter­net ad­dress:­vas­set­man­age­ BOV As­set Man­age­ment is li­censed by the MFSA.

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