European stocks rise as Chinese central bank intervention boosts recovery optimism

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European stocks opened higher on Friday as further central bank stimulus bolstered prospects for an economic recovery in China’s biggest trading partner, but a regional stock barometer is set to end the week lower in because of fears of recession. The pan-European STOXX 600 index rose 0.8%, driven by the mining and energy sectors. This brought weekly losses below 1%, marking the sixth consecutive weekly decline. UK retail sales unexpectedly rose in April, but the outlook for consumer spending remained bleak. Separate statistics showed a record rise in German producer prices last month, due to rising energy costs caused by the conflict in Ukraine.

China offered some glimmers of hope as the central bank’s latest decision to cut its five-year prime lending rate by 15 basis points more than expected boosted recovery hopes. But reports of more COVID-19 cases kept sentiment in check. Luxury shares took a hit as Richemont fell 10.5%, after the company said talks about its ‘Luxury New Retail’ partnership were ‘taking time’. But strong U.S. demand for Richemont’s jewelry and watches boosted its net profit and sales in the 12 months to March, the company said.

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  • European stocks rise as Chinese central bank intervention boosts recovery optimism
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