UPDATE 2-European stocks record best quarter since March 2015 on recovery hopes

  • Reuters
  • Stock Market News
UPDATE 2-European stocks record best quarter since March 2015 on recovery hopes
Credit: © Reuters.

(For a live blog on European stocks, type LIVE/ in an Eikon news window)

* STOXX 600 records a more than 12% quarterly gain

* Healthcare, oil, banks weigh on STOXX 600

* Shell to write down $22 bln in assets, shares slide (Updates to market close)

By Sruthi Shankar

June 30 (Reuters) - European stocks rose marginally on Tuesday to close out their best quarter since March 2015 as investors bet that the worst economic fallout from the coronavirus crisis had passed.

After lingering in negative territory, the pan-European STOXX 600 .STOXX finished 0.1% higher, led by technology .SX8P , mining .SXPP and real estate .SX86P sectors.

A bounce on Wall Street also helped lift sentiment as investors focused on signs of an economic rebound even as several U.S. states marked a record spike in new COVID-19 infections. Europe, the picture was mixed with German stocks .GDAXI rising 0.6%, while UK's FTSE 100 .FTSE dropped 0.9% as data showed Britain's economy shrank by the most since 1979 in early 2020 as households slashed their spending. markets in the recent weeks have been torn between fears of a resurgence in coronavirus cases globally and positive economic data as many countries emerge from weeks-long lockdown, slowing the pace of a stock market recovery in June.

The STOXX 600 posted a 12.6% rise in the second quarter - its best since March 2015 - as unprecedented stimulus, hopes of a COVID-19 vaccine and relatively fewer virus cases in Europe powered a rebound from March lows, but the index is down 13.6% for the year.

"We think that a renewed panic in financial markets is unlikely, even if cases in the U.S. continue to rise," analysts at Capital Economics wrote in a note.

"The main risk to our forecast that risky assets will gain further ground in the remainder of 2020 is that the latest outbreaks slows down the economic recovery in the U.S."

Chipmakers STMicroelectronics STM.MI , Infineon Technologies IFXGn.DE , ASM International ASMI.AS rose between 1.6% and 5.8% following an upbeat revenue forecast from U.S.-based Micron Technology MU.O . energy major Royal Dutch Shell RDSa.L fell 3.9% after revealing plans to slash the value of its oil and gas assets by up to $22 billion and weakened the outlook for energy prices. broader energy index .SXEP fell 1.4% as oil prices slipped on a possible return of Libyan production. O/R

Swedish airline SAS SAS.ST slumped 12.6% after it agreed to a 14.25 billion crown ($1.5 billion)plan with top shareholders to shore up its finances against the collapse in air travel. payments company Wirecard WDIG.DE jumped 75.8%, extending gains for a second day.

($1 = 9.3011 Swedish crowns)

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