Europe Stocks Steady as Traders Weigh Virus Impact, Aid Deadlock

This content was published on October 14, 2020 - 16:01

(Bloomberg) -- European stocks were little changed on Tuesday before the earnings season begins in full swing as investors weighed the longer-term impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on profits as well as the U.S. stimulus impasse.

The Stoxx Europe 600 Index closed down less than 0.1%. Utilities and energy shares gained, while health-care shares declined. Atlantia SpA surged after saying it’s ready to discuss an offer from Italy’s state lender for its stake in Autostrade per l’Italia SpA, and Britain’s FTSE 100 index fell 0.6% as the pound strengthened.

After kicking off October with strong gains, European stocks are losing momentum. Investors expecting a deal on a U.S. virus relief package have been disappointed by a lack of progress in talks just weeks before the presidential election. A setback in vaccine progress also damped spirits this week. Still, the earnings season may provide triggers for further moves.

“Any time we see a sell-off, we see a pretty quick recovery because there’s a lot of cash on the sidelines and there’s a recognition that monetary policy is supportive of risk assets,” Kristina Hooper, chief global market strategist for Invesco Advisers, said by phone. “We’re not going to see a true V-shaped recovery until the vaccine, and until then we’ll likely see a rotation between growth and value depending on the newsflow.”

Among individual stocks, Just Eat Plc and Ashmore Group Plc climbed following well-received quarterly updates.

©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

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