European stocks sluggish as COVID-19 cases rise

European stocks sluggish as COVID-19 cases rise

Reuters  | Sep 25, 2020 09:00

European stocks sluggish as COVID-19 cases rise

(Reuters) - Telecom stocks nudged European stocks slightly higher on Friday, but the main indexes were on course for sharp weekly declines as the continent grapples with a fresh wave of COVID-19 cases.

The pan-European STOXX 600 index (STOXX) rose 0.2% by 0715 GMT, with telecom stocks (SXKP) jumping 0.8% to lead sectoral gains.

Spanish telephone operator MasMovil (MC:MASM) rose 0.7% after a local newspaper reported that Vodafone (L:VOD) has started talks to buy the company. Vodafone gained 1.3%.

France's CAC40 (FCHI) fell 0.4% after the country set a new record of daily COVID-19 infections and prime minister warned on Thursday that the government could be forced to reconfine areas.

The German DAX (GDAXI) slipped 0.3% and UK's FTSE 100 (FTSE) was flat.

In a volatile week marked by worries about coronavirus restrictions hampering the European economic recovery and continued unwinding of bullish bets in U.S. tech firms, the STOXX 600 benchmark was set for its worst week in over three months.

© Reuters. The German share price index DAX graph at the stock exchange in Frankfurt

Paris Match publisher Lagardere (PA:LAGA) surged 10.4% after billionaire Bernard Arnault revealed he had built up a direct stake in the firm, which is under siege from several other investors.

 

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