(Sharecast News) – European equities advanced on Friday morning on a quiet day for economic data and corporate earnings, with banking stocks across the continent providing a lift.
The Stoxx 600 was up 0.7% early on, with broad-based gains across London, Frankfurt, Paris, Milan and Madrid
Economic data was relatively thin on the ground on Friday with UK retail sales the only major release.
Sales declined by 0.3% in October after a revised 1.1% drop the previous month with volumes dropping to their lowest since February 2021. Analysts were expecting a 0.3% gain.
Eurozone inflation figures are due out at 1000 GMT, but as secondary estimates are not expected to be market-moving. Headline annual inflation is predicted to be unchanged from the initial estimates at 2.9% for October, which was down from 4.3% in September. Core inflation should be in line with the initial estimate at 4.2%, down from 4.5% the previous month.
Oil prices were holding steady after a huge tumble on Thursday on the back of reports of higher supply in the US and weak demand from China. Brent crude dropped over 4% to $77.42 a barrel, and was trading flat early on Friday.
In stock movements, banks across the continent were performing well early on, with BNP Paribas, Societe Generale, HSBC, Barclays, Bankinter and Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena all putting in decent gains.
Oil stocks were mixed after heavy falls the previous session as crude prices slid. Shell was flat, TotalEnergies was firmly lower, while Repsol and BP gained.
Burberry edged higher after an 11% drop on Thursday after warning about a luxury slowdown, with sales falling in China. LVMH, Hermes, Christian Dior, Moncler and Kering, which all declined the previous session, were also bouncing back slightly on Friday morning.
Siemens AG was also higher, extending gains after delivering record fourth-quarter results on Thursday.