European stocks ended Thursday session higher on decreasing jobless claims in the U.S. to its lowest level in five years alongside with upbeat PMIs data in euro zone and Germany.
The U.S. Labor Department showed on Thursday that Initial jobless claims fell to its lowest level in five years by 5,000 to 330,000 In the week ending on January 19, from 335,000, while estimates was 355,000.
Continuing jobless claims for the week ending January 13, also declined by 71,000 to 3,157,000 from 3,214,000, which revised higher to 3,228,000 and better than expectation of 3,200,000.
On the other end, European manufacturing and service improved in January but it remains in contraction, which confirms Mario Draghi when he said the worst of the debt crisis may be over, stating the “darkest clouds” have lifted.
Eurozone Manufacturing PMI rose to a ten-month high of 47.5 in January from 46.1 in December, beating analysts` median estimate of 46.6. Services PMI, on the other hand, jumped to 48.3 in January from 47.5 in December, while analysts expected an average estimate of 48.0.
STOXX 600 ended higher today by 0.23% at 288.89; STOXX 50 also closed higher by 0.54% at 2722.96.
CAC 40 Index
The French benchmark index ended in green today to settle at 3752.17 points, higher by 26.00 points or 0.70%. The index opened at 3722.85 recording a high of 3752.42 and a low of 3711.55.
The best performers in terms of added value to the index were led by BNP Paribas which inclined 2.08% to settle at €46.06. Following was Sanofi which surged 0.96% to settle at €72.75, while coming in third was by Total SA which rose 0.80% to close at €39.47.
As for the worst performing shares, they were Michelin as it fell 1.61% to end at €69.25; ArcelorMittal as it shed 0.41% to settle at €13.35 while Cie Generale d’Optique Essilor fell 0.27% to close at €77.79.
German equities advanced today where the benchmark index DAX 30 ended higher by 40.59 points or 0. 53% to close at 7,748.13 the index opened at 7,700.53 recording a high of 7,753.30 and a low of 7,661.76.
Driving the index higher by contributing the most to the index today were led by Deutsche Bank AG that gained 2.63% to €36.33; following was by Lanxess AG as it added 2.46% to €64.92 and Deutsche Boerse AG which added 2.41% to €48.96.
Lagging shares were Siemens AG which fell 2.89% to €81.26, Infineon Tech as it lost 0.89% to settle at €6.67 and E.ON SE that settled at €13.36 down by 0.89%.
FTSE 100 Index
The British benchmark index ended the day slightly higher to settle at 6264.91 with a gain of 67.27 points or 1.09 percent. The index opened the day at 6197.64 setting the high of 6271.40 and the low of 6186.48.
Leading shares in terms of contribution today started with Vodafone Group PLC which surged 3.18% to close at £168.65; following was HSBC Holdings PLC which added 1.41% to end trading at £704.90 and British American Tobacco PLC which added 1.55% to close at £3249.50.
Meanwhile, lagging shares were led by Aggreko PLC where it ended down by 3.19%, closing at £1761.00; following was Diageo PLC which shed 0.27% to close at £1,860.00 and BT Group PLC which slipped 0.60% to close at £249.20.