The French market is moderately higher in afternoon trading Friday, after European Central Bank President Mario Draghi's comments lifted stocks in the previous session. Mixed corporate reports from across the region weighed on sentiment, ahead of the release of the U.S. GDP data.
Draghi on Thursday said the bank is prepared to take whatever measures needed to preserve the euro. "Within our mandate, the ECB is ready to do whatever it takes to preserve the euro," he told an investment conference in London. "And believe me, it will be enough," he stated.
The Euro Stoxx 50 index of eurozone bluechip stocks is adding 0.17 percent, while the Stoxx Europe 50 index, which includes some major U.K. companies, is gaining 0.24 percent.
The CAC 40 index opened higher and after a brief peep into negative territory is currently up 0.55 percent.
EADS is surging 6.2 percent after second-quarter profit nearly quadrupled and the firm lifted its forecast.
Michelin is gaining around 6 percent. The tire maker said profit in the first half of the year increased significantly from last year, supported by a rise in revenues.
Lafarge is gaining 4.4 percent. The cement giant reported an adjusted flat profit for the second quarter, as revenue grew 5 percent.
Renault, Total and PPR are gaining notably after announcing results.
UBS cut Peugeot to "Neutral" from "Buy." The stock is down 1.4 percent.
Saint-Gobain is plunging over 11 percent and Vallourec is losing close to 9 percent after results discouraged investors.
Elsewhere in Europe, the German DAX is losing 0.19 percent and the UK's FTSE 100 is falling 0.12 percent. Switzerland's SMI is gaining 0.36 percent.
In economic news, Germany's flash inflation data is due at 8.00 am ET, which may have some impact on the markets. Economists forecast EU harmonized inflation to ease to 1.9 percent in July from 2 percent in June. On a monthly basis, the harmonized index is seen rising 0.4 percent.
In the U.S., the Bureau of Economic Analysis is due to release its advance estimate of second quarter GDP at 8:30 am ET. Economists expect GDP growth of 1.2 percent for the quarter following a 1.9 percent increase in the previous quarter.
Across Asia/Pacific, markets reacted positively to the remarks made by Draghi. Australia's All Ordinaries and Japan's Nikkei 225 climbed 1.5 percent each and Hong Kong's Hang Seng gained 2 percent. China's Shanghai Composite Index added 0.1 percent.
In the U.S., futures point to a higher open on Wall Street. In the previous session, stocks moved sharply higher during trading in response to comments made by Mario Draghi. The Dow jumped 1.7 percent, the Nasdaq surged up 1.4 percent and the S&P 500 soared 1.7 percent.
In the commodity space, crude for September delivery is adding $0.20 to $89.59 per barrel and August gold is rising $2.3 to $1617.4 a troy ounce.
by RTT Staff Writer
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