European Bourses Struggle After Weak German Confidence Data


European stocks struggled to gain after German investor confidence missed forecasts.

German investor confidence dropped in February, with the ZEW indicator of economic sentiment declining 6 points to 55.7 and missing analysts expectations. The drop marks the second weakening in a row, after the January survey fell to 61.7, after reaching a seven-year high of 62 in December.

In other news around the region, UK CPI slowed in January to an annual rate of 1.9% from 2.0% a month earlier. The annual rate of inflation was last lower in October 2009. The BOE's target is 2%.

The eurozone's current account decreased in adjusted terms to a surplus of 21.3 billion euros ($29.2 billion) in December from a downwardly revised EUR23.3 billion in November, which was an all-time high.

European car sales grew for the fifth month in a row in January, rising 5.5% from a year earlier to 935,640 vehicles, according to the latest data from the Association of European Automobile Manufacturers.

In the United States, the Empire State index fell more than expected to 4.5 in February, and a gauge of confidence among home builders plunged in February to the lowest level in nine months.

In ADR news, Delhaize Group ( DEG ) was upgraded to overweight from equal weight at Morgan Stanley, according to Dow Jones Newswires.

Veolia Environnement ( VE ) has agreed to supply and treat water for Royal Dutch Shell PLC's (RDS.A) Carmon Creek heavy-oil project in Canada. VE will supply the 50,000 tons of steam a day needed to produce as many as 80,000 barrels of oil a day, the French company said. The company will recycle about 99% of the water used in the project.

InterContinental Hotels Group Plc ( IHG ) said renovation costs will hurt this year's earnings. Operating profit before exceptional items and tax in 2013 climbed to $668 million from $605 million a year earlier.

The FTSE-100 was last up 0.9% at 6,796.43, the DAX up 0.03% at

9,659.78 and the CAC-40 down 0.1% at 4,330.71.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of The NASDAQ OMX Group, Inc.

Copyright (C) 2014 All rights reserved. Unauthorized reproduction is strictly prohibited.

This article appears in: Investing , Commodities

Referenced Stocks: DEG , VE , IHG

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