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Title: European Stocks Edge Higher; Continuing Rally on Omicron Optimism

Dec 08, 2021 03:38AM ET

By: AnalysisWatch

European stock markets posted modest gains on Wednesday, joining the recent strong rally triggered by hopes that the Omicron Covid 19 variant is less contagious than earlier versions.

At 3:35 AM ET, Germany's DAX traded 0.1% higher, France's CAC 40 rose 0.5%, and the UK's FTSE 100 climbed 0.5%.

A South African study suggested Tuesday that booster doses made by Pfizer and its German partner BioNTech could help ward off infection by Omicron, although the study showed the new strain can partially evade the protection of two doses. BioNTech shares fell 0.7%.

In corporate news, shares of L'Oreal rose 1.2% and Nestle 1.7% after the world's largest food company said late on Tuesday it would reduce its stake in the French cosmetics company to about 20%, the first time it has reduced its holding in seven years.

L'Oreal said the deal will have a positive impact on the company's earnings per share of more than 4% for the full year.

Tui shares fell 2.8% after the tour operator reported a full-year loss of more than 2 billion euros ($2.26 billion) and warned that news surrounding Omicron had slowed bookings, while HelloFresh shares slumped 6.9% after the meal-kit provider issued disappointing guidance for 2022.

Umicore shares fell 5.1% after the Belgian chemical and recycling company announced plans to set up a battery materials company to supply Volkswagen as the German carmaker expands its production of electric vehicles. After a German newspaper reported that the controlling Porsche/Piech family might spin off its luxury Porsche brand to finance the shift to electric mobility, VW shares rose 1.6%, continuing their upward trend.

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