October 25, 2018 / 7:44 AM / 21 days ago

European stocks bounce back after global sell-off

LONDON (Reuters) - Euro zone shares ended a choppy session well in positive territory on Thursday as positive corporate results in France and a late boost from a weakening euro - a boon for exporters - lifted the market.

A trader works at Frankfurt's stock exchange in Frankfurt, Germany, February 6, 2018. REUTERS/Ralph Orlowski

Shares had earlier fallen amid a global sell-off, with weak results from blue chips such as AB InBev or WPP underlining investor concern about slowing earnings growth.

The euro zone STOXX .STOXXE rose 1 percent with France's CAC 40 .FCHI gaining as much as 1.6 percent, lifted by a batch of positive corporate results.

The region’s exporters also got a lift from a falling euro after European Central Bank chief Mario Draghi said Europe’s monetary union remained fragile, doing little to assuage concerns about financial instability in Italy.

Gains also accelerated with Wall Street delivering a strong comeback after heavy losses on Wednesday and the tech-heavy Nasdaq having its worst day since 2011.

Earnings dominated the day with some heavy losses.

WPP (WPP.L) shares sank and lost 13.8 percent after the advertising group cut its outlook, reporting a sharp downturn in trading. The stock hit its lowest level since December 2012 and was down 16 percent by 0840 GMT.

WPP dragged the media sector down .SXMP 2 percent.

AB InBev (ABI.BR) shares tumbled 10.4 percent after the Belgian brewing giant halved its dividend due to volatility in emerging markets.

“In every region, both volumes and sales missed expectations. The bright spots were China, Mexico, Western Europe and many African markets while Brazil, Argentina and South Africa faced difficulty,” wrote Liberum analysts.

Stocks that missed expectations were punished harshly.

Sweden’s Epiroc (EPIRa.ST) fell 5.2 percent after the Swedish mining machinery maker reported third-quarter orders well below market expectations.

Autos .SXAP rose 3.1 percent with Peugeot (PEUP.PA) topping the CAC 40, up 7 percent.

Top of the STOXX was Kion (KGX.DE), jumping 13 percent after the German logistics company reported strong order intake.

Finnish heavy machinery firm Konecranes (KCRA.HE) also rose 12.8 percent after reporting stronger-than-expected earnings.

Dometic (DOMETIC.ST) was among the biggest fallers, down 16.2 percent after the manufacturer of motorhome electrical parts reported profits in line with expectations.

Reporting by Helen Reid and Julien Ponthus; Editing by Josephine Mason and Hugh Lawson

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