The European markets got off to a weak start Wednesday. Technology stocks added to their recent losses and mining stocks struggled. Weakness in commodity prices and concerns over the possibility of a possible U.S. government shutdown also contributed to the negative mood.
However, the markets pared their losses over the course of the trading day and ended the session with mixed results. Markets on Wall Street struggled in early trade Wednesday, but investors were encouraged by the release of the better than expected U.S. private employment data. Investors are looking forward to the release of the U.S. jobs report on Friday.
The pan-European Stoxx Europe 600 index weakened by 0.10 percent. The Euro Stoxx 50 index of eurozone blue chip stocks decreased 0.25 percent, while the Stoxx Europe 50 index, which includes some major U.K. companies, added 0.14 percent.
The DAX of Germany dropped 0.38 percent and the CAC 40 of France fell 0.02 percent. The FTSE 100 of the U.K. gained 0.28 percent and the SMI of Switzerland finished higher by 0.23 percent.
In Frankfurt, furniture retailer Steinhoff plunged 63.26 percent after its CEO Markus Jooste resigned with immediate effect on allegations of irregularities in the company’s accounts that require further investigation.
Thyssenkrupp lost 0.29 percent after its labor union gave the company until December 22 to agree to demands.
In Paris, Elior sank 7.05 percent. The catering group said it expects organic sales growth of 3 percent in the 2017/18 fiscal year.
In London, Legal & General Group lost 0.87 percent after it agreed to sell its Mature Savings business to the ReAssure division of Swiss Re Ltd for 650 million pounds.
Smith & Nephew rose 0.15 percent. The medical equipment group said it has completed the acquisition of Rotation Medical Inc., the developer of a novel tissue regeneration technology for shoulder rotator cuff repair.
Shopping center investment firm Hammerson tumbled 6.17 percent after making a recommended £3.4bn offer for rival Intu Properties. Shares of Intu surged 13.77 percent.
Insurance and travel specialist Saga plunged 21.40 percent after a profit warning.
EasyJet gained 1.26 percent after reporting an 8 percent growth in passenger traffic for November.
Nestle rose 1.24 percent in Zurich after it agreed to buy privately-held Atrium Innovations from a group of investors led by Permira Funds for US$2.3 billion in cash.
Novo Nordisk rallied 3.36 percent in Copenhagen after receiving FDA approval for a…