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European stocks see faltering start to 2018 as autos weigh

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01/02/2018 | 06:32pm CEST
The German share price index, DAX board, is seen at the stock exchange in Frankfurt

LONDON (Reuters) - European stocks faltered at the start of the trading year on Tuesday as autos stocks fell and strength in the euro weighed, while trading was cautious ahead of the launch of a major reform of European Union financial markets.

The pan-European STOXX 600 <.STOXX> index dipped 0.2 percent, as did euro zone stocks <.STOXXE>.

Autos stocks <.SXAP> were 0.1 percent lower, dented by weaker car registrations data.

New car sales in France fell 0.51 percent in December and the share of new diesel cars dipped below 50 percent for the first time since 2000.

A trader also pointed to a report in Britain's Daily Telegraph citing forecasts that UK car registrations data, due out on Friday, would show a 5 percent decline in new car sales.

Schaeffler (>> Schaeffler) fell 4.9 percent, while BMW (>> Bayerische Motoren Werke) and Volkswagen (>> Volkswagen) were both around 0.5 percent lower, recovering early losses slightly.

Basic resources stocks also bounced back from early declines with the sector index <.SXPP> rising 1.2 percent.

The mining sector built on the five-year high it reached at the end of last week, riding a wave of rising copper and other base metal prices.

Oil, which marked its highest start to the trading year since 2014, supported benchmarks with oil majors across the region rising in concert with crude.

More broadly, trading volumes in European equities remained muted as traders came back from holidays and ahead of the launch of new rules for the region's financial markets.

In other eye-catching moves, Lufthansa (>> Lufthansa Group) slipped 1.4 percent after British Airways owner IAG (>> International Consolidated Airlines Group) agreed to buy Air Berlin's insolvent Austrian airline Niki.

The German carrier had backed out of a deal to buy Niki's assets in mid-December due to competition concerns.

"The circa 20 planes not acquired through Niki are a loss but not significant for the Lufthansa investment case from our point of view," said Bernstein analysts.

Germany-listed shares in South African retailer Steinhoff <SNHG.DE> surged 10 percent to the top of the STOXX, despite the firm saying its 2015 results would also have to be restated. The company also said its internal review of accounting irregularities was progressing.

Broker moves also drove trading: an upgrade to "buy" from Sydbank sent wind turbine maker Vestas Wind (>> Vestas Wind Systems) up 2.6 percent after the company secured several new orders.

The Danish bank said a flurry of new orders and less uncertainty in the U.S. market indicated activity in 2018 could be higher than expected.

For the graphic 'Europe's miners at 5-year high', click - http://reut.rs/2CaVart

(Reporting by Helen Reid,; Editing by Matthew Mpoke Bigg and Ed Osmond)

By Helen Reid and Kit Rees

Stocks mentioned in the article
ChangeLast1st jan.
BANCO SANTANDER -0.88% 4.6195 End-of-day quote.-15.69%
BAYERISCHE MOTOREN WERKE -0.41% 79.27 Delayed Quote.-8.30%
EQUINOR -0.09% 218 Delayed Quote.24.54%
FIAT CHRYSLER AUTOMOBILES 0.47% 16.64 End-of-day quote.11.60%
INTERNATIONAL CONSOLIDATED AIRLINES GROUP 0.21% 669.4 Delayed Quote.2.64%
LUFTHANSA GROUP -0.83% 20.22 Delayed Quote.-33.63%
PEUGEOT -0.62% 20.94 Real-time Quote.24.15%
RENAULT 0.24% 73.79 Real-time Quote.-12.29%
RIO TINTO -0.47% 4023 Delayed Quote.2.47%
RIO TINTO LIMITED -0.54% 79.41 End-of-day quote.5.32%
SCHAEFFLER -0.90% 11.06 Delayed Quote.-24.45%
STOXX EUROPE 600 0.07% 385.17 Delayed Quote.-1.07%
TOTAL -0.04% 53.32 Real-time Quote.15.82%
VESTAS WIND SYSTEMS 0.77% 391.7 Delayed Quote.-9.24%
VOLKSWAGEN -0.36% 143.46 Delayed Quote.-13.49%
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Financials (€)
Sales 2018 66 505 M
EBIT 2018 8 671 M
Net income 2018 5 571 M
Debt 2018 16 260 M
Yield 2018 3,93%
P/E ratio 2018 13,09
P/E ratio 2019 12,14
EV / Sales 2018 1,38x
EV / Sales 2019 1,27x
Capitalization 75 223 M
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BASF Technical Analysis Chart | BAS | DE000BASF111 | 4-Traders
Technical analysis trends BASF
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Mean consensus OUTPERFORM
Number of Analysts 24
Average target price 102 €
Spread / Average Target 25%
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Managers
NameTitle
Martin Brudermüller Chairman-Executive Board
Jürgen Hambrecht Chairman-Supervisory Board
Hans-Ulrich Engel Chief Financial Officer & Vice Chairman
Michael Diekmann Vice Chairman-Supervisory Board
François Diederich Member-Supervisory Board
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DOWDUPONT-6.82%153 868
ROYAL DSM10.91%18 731
GROUPE BRUXELLES LAMBERT1.23%17 176
EVONIK INDUSTRIES-4.88%16 030
MITSUBISHI CHEMICAL HOLDINGS CORP.-25.98%12 478