UPDATE 2-European stocks climb, led by banks as telecoms weigh

  • Reuters
  • Stock Market News
UPDATE 2-European stocks climb, led by banks as telecoms weigh
Credit: © Reuters.

* STOXX up 0.5 pct as banks buoy market

* Tech stocks lag as software maker SAP falls

* Publicis gives up gains on mixed reception for plan

* Fenner shoots up to slightly above Michelin offer (Updates prices, adds details)

By Danilo Masoni and Helen Reid

MILAN/LONDON, March 20 (Reuters) - European stocks recovered on Tuesday, led by banking stocks while tech stayed under pressure after concerns over increased regulation and taxation of large companies in the sector prompted selling overnight on Wall Street.

The pan-European STOXX 600 .STOXX index ended 0.5 percent higher, while Britain's FTSE .FTSE rose 0.3 percent after hitting a 15-month low in the previous session.

Pressure on Facebook FB.O intensified as Britain said it was investigating after a whistleblower said a London-based political consultancy hired by U.S. President Donald Trump improperly accessed information on 50 million of the firm's users. tech stocks .SX8P lagged the market, though they managed a 0.4 percent rise having lost more than 1.5 percent in the previous session. The sector remains the biggest gainer in Europe over the last 12 months.

Strong financials meanwhile helped offset weakness among media and telecoms stocks.

Support from Publicis PUBP.PA evaporated as its shares turned lower following early gains of as much as 3 percent as analysts showed a mixed reception to its new business plan in a challenging advertising market. world's third largest advertising group said it was redoubling efforts to become a consulting partner for global advertisers online to help boost sluggish growth. analyst Ian Whittaker affirmed his "Hold" rating on the stock, calling the plan ambitious.

"On a general level, Publicis has taken probably the most 'bearish' view on the future of agencies, which probably reflects its acquisition of IT consultancy firm Sapient, and the wording of the statement reflects that," he said.

Advertisers and media stocks are among the worst performers in Europe over the last 12 months, as they struggle to compete against big U.S. internet players like Facebook and Google GOOGL.O which are facing growing regulatory scrutiny.

Among tech manufacturers, shares in German software maker SAP SAPG.DE fell 0.5 percent on a negative read-across from disappointing results at U.S. peer Oracle (NYSE: ORCL ) ORCL.N which reported sales from its cloud business fell short of Wall Street expectations. hiccup in Oracle's cloud business could hurt SAP sentiment," said a trader in Frankfurt.

British software company Micro Focus MCRO.L fell another 1.9 percent, having lost 46.3 percent in the previous session after its CEO quit and it cut its revenue outlook. More than half a dozen analysts cut their price targets on Micro Focus. stocks .SXKP were the worst performers, weighed by Swisscom SCMN.S and Sunrise SRCG.S , which turned sharply lower after rival Salt Mobile said it would enter the Swiss fixed-line market. two Swiss operators dropped 4.6 to 6.4 percent.

UK mid-cap Fenner FENR.L surged 25 percent after French tyre maker Michelin MICP.PA announced plans to buy the British engineering company for 1.2 billion pounds ($1.7 billion). shares closed at 612.5 pence, just above the 610 pence cash offer from Michelin, whose shares rose 1.2 percent.

A sell rating from UBS sent shares in France's BIC BICP.PA down 6.8 percent to the bottom of the STOXX.

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