UPDATE 2-European shares rise on trade talks optimism; Michelin inflates autos

  • Reuters
  • Stock Market News
UPDATE 2-European shares rise on trade talks optimism; Michelin inflates autos
Credit: © Reuters.

* Plus500 sinks after profit warning

* Michelin shares register best day in nearly a decade

* Gucci owner Kering falls

* Credit Suisse (SIX: CSGN ) takes profits on global equities (Adds closing prices)

By Josephine Mason

LONDON, Feb 12 (Reuters) - European shares closed higher on Tuesday as investors cheered positivity around U.S.-China trade talks and signs of a compromise to avoid another U.S. government shutdown, while Michelin's results pumped up automotive stocks.

The pan-European STOXX 600 .STOXX was up 0.5 percent, with Germany's trade-sensitive DAX GDAXI advancing 1 percent and Paris' CAC 40 .FCHI up 0.8 percent.

Automakers and their suppliers .SXAP were the biggest gainers, up 2.9 percent after Michelin MICP.PA delivered better than expected results and pledged further gains in operating profit this year despite challenging conditions.

The French tyre maker's shares rallied 13 percent for their best day in nearly a decade.

Italy's Pirelli PIRC.MI and Germany's Continental CONG.DE were among the biggest gainers in their domestic markets and on the STOXX 600.

London indices .FTSE .FTMC underperformed their euro zone peers as the pound rose slightly after a parliamentary address by British Prime Minister Theresa May, in which she asked for more time to secure a Brexit deal.

Gucci owner Kering PRTP.PA was another winner, with its shares turning positive in mid-morning trade as investors took comfort from upbeat comments on the first-quarter outlook. shares had fallen as much as 3.3 percent in early trade as better than expected sales initially failed to impress investors in a sign of the demanding expectations for luxury brands after solid numbers from the sector, including LVMH LVMH.PA last week. The shares closed with a 3.3 percent gain.

Thyssenkrupp TKAG.DE fell 2 percent after a mixed earnings report. The German steel-to-elevator company stood by its 2018/19 targets but reported a big drop in first-quarter results and warned that the global economic environment is darkening.

Investors continued to punish TUI TUIGn.DE as the tour operator reported a widening loss in the three months to Dec. 31. Shares fell another 5.4 percent after its profit warning last week.

Online trading platform Plus500 PLUSP.L lost about 30 percent of its value after the company issued a profit and revenue warning, blaming tightening EU regulation on its retail business. The news dragged peer IG IGG.L with it. Suisse said it was shifting to a "neutral" stance on global equities, taking profit on its "overweight" view.

"While we continue to expect overall attractive total returns from global equities this year, we recognise certain mounting short-term risks," it said.

"In particular, we note that investors remain thin-skinned after last December's correction."

Furthermore, the U.S.-China trade conflict could lead to renewed volatility while growing political tensions in Italy, France and Germany and the still uncertain Brexit outcome could weigh further on European stocks, the bank said.

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