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VIENNA (Alliance News) – European stocks rose on Monday as low-cost airline Ryanair posted a slight increase in first-quarter net profit and William Hill said it received a “highly preliminary” approach from 888 Holdings and Rank Group regarding a potential combination.

Better-than-expected German business sentiment data and a communique issued by the G20 ministers pledging to boost sluggish global growth also underpinned investor sentiment.

The IFO Institute’s German business climate index came in at 108.3, down from 108.7 the previous month but comfortably above the expected score of 107.5.

The US Federal Reserve and the Bank of Japan are set to meet later this week amid hopes that policymakers will sound dovish enough to help limit the economic fallout from Britain’s shock vote to leave the EU.

The pan-European Stoxx Europe 600 index was up 0.6% in midday trading after closing 0.1% lower on Friday. The German DAX was rallying 0.9% and France’s CAC 40 index was rising 0.6% while the UK’s FTSE 100 was marginally higher in choppy trade.

Dutch consumer electronics giant Philips Electronics gained over 2% after backing its FY16 outlook.

Julius Baer Group climbed 4% after the Swiss private banking group reported an increase in its first-half profit.

Swedish mobile telecoms gear maker Ericsson AB rallied 3% as its chief executive Hans Vestberg stepped down with immediate effect after more than six years at the helm.

French household equipment manufacturer SEB sored more than 6% in Paris after saying it expects to achieve an organic sales growth above 5% and an increase in operating result from activity above 10% in 2016.

L’Oreal gained 1%. The cosmetics company has agreed to buy IT Cosmetics, one of the fastest growing prestige beauty brands in the US, for a cash purchase price of USD1.2 billion.

LafargeHolcim rose 1.2%. The cement giant has signed a pact with Siam City Cement Public Company Limited for the divestment of its interest in Holcim Lanka for an enterprise value of USD400 million.

Air France KLM fell almost 3% as its cabin crew unions prepare to begin a seven-day walkout this week.

Casino operator Rank Group rose half a percent and online gambling operator 888 Holdings rallied 3% in London while ailing bookmaker William Hill soared 7%.

Ryanair Holdings climbed 6% after reiterating its fiscal 2017 profit forecast.

Aberdeen Asset Management advanced 2.5% after releasing its trading update for the nine months to June 30.

Banks traded mostly lower, with Barclays losing over 1%, Lloyds Banking Group declining 1.5% and the Royal Bank of Scotland Group moving down half a percent.

Gold miner Fresnillo lost 1.5% and Randgold Resources retreated 2.5% as gold extended losses on a firmer dollar.

Copyright RTT News/dpa-AFX

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