European markets higher on busy day of financial results

·2-min read
The City of London financial district. Photo: Mike Kemp/In Pictures via Getty Images
The City of London financial district. Photo: Mike Kemp/In Pictures via Getty Images

European markets were mixed on Wednesday as earnings season kicked off in earnest, with a slew of banks reporting results alongside other big hitters. 

In London the FTSE 100 (^FTSE) was up 0.3% by the closing bell, having seen few changes throughout the day. Germany's DAX (^GDAXI) was up 0.3% and France's CAC (^FCHI) headed 1% higher following a day of losses. 

Investors held their nerve on an interesting day of trade with earning reports from Metro Bank (MTRO.L), Santander (SAN.MC), Barclays (BARC.L), Aston Martin (AML.L), GlaxoSmithKline (GSK.L), ITV (ITV.L), Deutsche Bank (DB), and Rio Tinto (RIO.L). 

In the US, stocks made muted moves by the end of the day in London following some big-hitting tech earnings the day before. The S&P 500 (^GSPC) was 0.1% higher, the Dow (^DJI) was down 0.1% and the tech-heavy Nasdaq (^IXIC) rose 0.6%.

Apple (AAPL) and Google parent Alphabet (GOOGL) both reported earnings that beat Tuesday night's expectations. 

Investors in the US will be pulled in different directions later on Wednesday due to the end of the Federal Reserve's policy meeting. 

Read more: Results round-up: What you need to know as earnings season kicks off

“It’s not enough to be making money now, investors need to know companies have a clear plan to make money tomorrow," said Danni Hewson, financial analyst at AJ Bell. "It’s been fascinating to watch share movements over the past couple of weeks as earnings season’s delivered day after day of stellar results.  

"But this quarter is skewed, pandemic winners have probably reached peak boom and pandemic losers have yet to show turnaround growth. For Q2 more than ever it’s the outlook that’s been scrutinised, how well have bosses transmitted their future plans and how confident are shareholders."

Meanwhile, it was a mixed day of trade in Asia, following a heavy selloff the day before due to regulatory action in China. The Hang Seng (^HSI) reversed some of its losses to the tune of 0.9%, the SSE Composite (000001.SS) continued downward, and Japan's Nikkei (^N225) lost 1.4%.

On Monday, the Hang Seng had slid to its lowest level since May 2020, as news reverberated that Beijing was cracking down on parts of the tech and education industries. 

According to the new reforms, these companies are not permitted to make profits or participate in stock markets in order to raise capital.

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