European shares edge higher, focus on EU recovery plan

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FILE PHOTO: The German share price index DAX graph is pictured at the stock exchange in Frankfurt, Germany, May 26, 2020. REUTERS/Staff

(Reuters) – European shares inched higher on Wednesday as investors focused on a fresh stimulus plan for the European Union, while renewed U.S.-China tensions over Hong Kong tempered optimism about a global economic recovery.

The pan-European STOXX 600 rose 0.4% in early deals, led by banks .SX7P, travel and leisure stocks .SXTP, and automakers .SXAP.

The eurozone stock index .STOXXE also gained 0.4%, with the European Commission set to unveil a plan to help the EU economy recover from its coronavirus slump with a mix of grants, loans and guarantees exceeding 1 trillion euros.

Asian markets, however, struggled after fresh protests in Hong Kong over new national security laws proposed by Beijing, while U.S. President Donald Trump warned of a strong response to China’s move by the end of this week.

Finnish tyre maker Nokian Tyres Plc (TYRES.HE) jumped 17% to the top of the STOXX 600 after it named a new chief executive officer.

Chipmaker Infineon Technologies AG (IFXGn.DE) dipped 2% after it raised about 1.06 billion euros ($1.16 billion) by issuing new shares to partially finance its $10 billion acquisition of U.S.-based Cypress Semiconductor.

Reporting by Sruthi Shankar in Bengaluru; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu

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