UK Markets closed

LIVE MARKETS-Closing snapshot: Bourses flat as EU agrees Brexit delay

* European stocks edge lower

* ABInBev, Ubisoft tank on Q3 results

* Kering lifts CAC 40

* UK stocks underperform amid Brexit fudge

* Swiss Market Index hits record high Welcome to the home for real-time coverage of European equity markets brought to you by Reuters stocks reporters and anchored today by Julien Ponthus. Reach him on Messenger to share your thoughts on market moves: julien.ponthus.thomsonreuters.com@reuters.net


CLOSING SNAPSHOT: BOURSES FLAT AS EU AGREES BREXIT DELAY(1550 GMT)

Main European bourses closed flat today after the EU agreed in principle to delay Brexit but set no new departure date. They will meet again early next week adding to the uncertainty of Prime Minister Boris Johnson's call for a snap election.

Investors got some relief in the afternoon when the U.S. Trade Representative said it is getting close to finalise some sections of a trade deal with China.

In terms of single stocks, Ubisoft and United Internet were the worst performers on the Stoxx 600 index, down 16-20% after they cut their FY outlook.

The day has also seen some mixed earnings results with beer maker InBev tumbling more than 9% on disappointing quarterly profit and a glum outlook.

On the other hand, the luxury sector's rally led by Gucci-owner Kering helped lift France's CAC index.

Spain's index closed higher led by a surge in the shares of Viscofan, up more than 17%.

Here is a snapshot of European bourses at the closing:

(Joice Alves)

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WHAT TO PICK WHEN YOU ARE NEARING RECESSION? (1308 GMT)

Global equity markets are simply "hanging in there", hoping for a yet elusive new wave of global growth. Until we get there, here are a few tips from DB's chief global strategist Binky Chadha whose leitmotif is "stay defensive".

Let's face the facts: global growth has been slow for the past 18 months, a recession in the U.S. is a distinct possibility and Brexit and the US-China trade spat are weighing on sentiment, Chadha says.

And if he has to change his mind, it'd be on trade policies or rather actions on trade by U.S. President Trump.

"And so what would change my mind is a resolution of the trade issue," he says. "Remaining defensive basically now is also part of our thesis that you kind of need the bad data to get Trump to relent on trade policy".


Meantime, until the worse comes to make things better, here are some tips from DB's chief strategist:

1) "You want to be long government bonds"

2) "You want to be underweight equities"

3) "And within equities, you want to be overweight or long on the defensive sectors"

4) "We are overweight the US [more likely to rebound quicker], neutral Europe and underweight Japan and emerging markets"

5) if you really want to invest in equities in Europe, pick utilities, real estate, staples and healthcare.


(Joice Alves)

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EARNINGS SO FAR... NOT THAT BAD! (1200 GMT)

We're in the middle of an earnings storm and, oh boy, look at those big moves in ABInbev , Gucci-owner Kering and Moncler.

What does this earnings season tell us? Say no to beer and yes to fancy handbags and jackets? Nah, joking!

No prizes for guessing this one, it's the usual trend with consensus reducing estimates into the season, only to be revised higher as the results come out.

JPM and Morgan Stanley say the initial burst of numbers from companies point to a positive earnings surprise in both the U.S. and Europe.

So far, 82% of S&P 500 companies that have reported and 59% of STOXX 600 companies have beated EPS estimates.


(Thyagaraju Adinarayan)

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GO GREEN OR GO HOME (1120 GMT)

UK Financial Reporting Council published yesterday a strengthened Stewardship Code imposing tougher checks on asset managers and demanding for the first time that they avoid to harm the environment and they consider appropriate governance practices.

Rich investors across the world seems to be onboard and increasingly taking into account ESG factors. "People are wondering about how they should invest with environmental challenges in view," says Kevin Gardiner, Global Investment Strategist at Rothschild & Co Wealth Management, adding that this is the top question he is getting from clients.

"We don't yet sort of prescribe any particular industries or companies but we're very carefully at companies which don't have good governance and haven't demonstrated a degree of social responsibility," Gardiner says.


(Joice Alves)

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BRITISH STOCKS: THAT VALUE TRAP FEELING? (1100 GMT)

British stocks have just hit a session low and are underperforming their European peers badly as we approach midday.

So now is perhaps a good time to wonder if the recent burst of enthusiasm for British stocks was nothing than a trap. A cunning value trap?

The rally which followed Johnson's EU divorce deal has lured in investors who just a few weeks ago wouldn't touch UK assets with a barge pole.

While there was a strong expectation this morning that the EU would grant a three-month Brexit deadline extension, a Commission spokeswoman just announced that there's only an agreement to do so in principle and that another meeting would take place next week.

So, with the House of Commons nowhere near being able to rubber-stamp the deal before the end of next week, we're still theoretically facing a no deal Brexit for Halloween.

Also, the good vibes of increased visibility have gradually faded with the total uncertainty over general elections being held before the end of the year.

More than that, for investors having second thought on UK assets, stepping back a bit and having a cold look at their performance since the Brexit referendum is a sobering exercise.

British blue chips and midcaps have severely underperformed their European peers when one takes in the currency effect.

This unforgiving DWS chart compares the performance of German, French, and UK local stocks with the FTSE 100 in euros.

(Julien Ponthus)

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OPENING SNAPSHOT: UNFORGIVING Q3, IT'S SHAME OR GLORY (0737 GMT)

There's quite a stark contrast between how violently stocks are being punished or rewarded for their Q3 results with the STOXX 600 index down just 0.1%.

While most regional benchmarks are slightly done, it's worth noticing that Kering, up a stellar 8.2% is key in keeping Paris into positive territory.

On the opposite side of things, brewing giant AB InBev is in free fall considering its weight, losing 9% and $14 billion in market share. Logically, Brussels' main index is getting hammered in comparison to its peers, losing 1.8%.

Among smaller market caps, Ubisoft has lost roughly a quarter of its value after cutting its guidance.

Here are the top movers on the STOXX 600:


(Julien Ponthus)

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INCOMING: BIG MOVES FOR KERING, WPP, INBEV, UBISOFT AND MORE! (0654 GMT)

Premarket indications are coming in and big moves are expected at the open, notably:

Kering, which could jump up to 10%

WPP is seen 2/5 percent higher

Valeo could go up 3/4%

Inbev seen falling 4%

Ubisoft couyld fall 10 percent

Synthomer could also get severely punished after a retreat in profits.

(Julien Ponthus and Thyagaraju Adinarayan)

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ON OUR RADAR: BRUSSELS CALLING AND Q3 SOUL SEARCHING (0624 GMT)

One of the biggest news expected during the trading session is the EU's decision to grant the UK another delay to Brexit which may help - or not - Boris Johnson to get the Dec 12 general election he's asking parliament to vote for on Monday.

While the global macro picture could be tweaked next week after the Fed meeting, analysts in the meantime are going through the flurry of Q3 releases to see whether Europe Inc is keeping the global slowdown in check or if the road to Q4 looks scaringly downhill from here.

There are quite a few calls for caution in this mornings Q3 results so the jury is still out on the very much hoped for bottom-up.

Here are a few headlines:

Michelin keeps its 2019 guidance but calls for caution

AB InBev gives dimmer 2019 view after weak Q3

LafargeHolcim slightly more cautious on Europe as Q3 sales dip

Essity posts Q3 profit above expectations, lowers savings target

Signify misses 3Q earnings targets, trims full year outlook

Dutch fashion retailer C&A, shareholders to raise about $445 mln in Brazil IPO

HSBC, StanChart results to show Hong Kong protests are starting to gnaw

Under pressure, Barclays restores UK post office cash withdrawals

Dutch telco KPN's Q3 core profit tops estimates on lower costs

Sweden's Epiroc Q3 profit lags forecast

(Julien Ponthus)

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CHOPPY FRIDAY AHEAD (0533 GMT)

European stocks markets are expected to open sideways on Friday with financial spreadbetters expecting a flat FTSE, the DAX to shed 19 points and the CAC 40 up just one point.

Brexit and Boris Johnson's push for a snap general election on Dec 12 is of course on the front page and will continue to drive the pound and UK stocks. Up or down? That's another question!

Amazon's gloomy forecast for the holiday season isn't doing much to cheer things up for investors worried about the Q3 earnings season and the global macro picture.

Economists polled by Reuters in recent weeks reckon a steeper decline in global growth is more likely than a synchronised recovery, even as multiple central banks dole out rounds of monetary easing.

Not much action overall for Asian benchmarks and next week's meetings of the Fed and of the Bank of Japan is likely to encourage investors to stay on the cautious side of things.

In the meantime, plenty of corporate news in Europe with big names reporting, such as Anheuser Busch Inbev.

(Julien Ponthus)

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(Reporting by Danilo Masoni, Joice Alves, Julien Ponthus and Thyagaraju Adinarayan)