As uncertainty about the economic outlook, a subject that will take center stage at the World Economic Forum in Davos this week, persisted, European markets edged cautiously higher on Wednesday. Early in the afternoon, the pan-European Stoxx 600 index was up 0.4%. Basic resources were leading gains, up 1.6%, and food and beverage stocks were down 0.7%.
In the meantime, the annual inflation rate in the U.K. decreased in December to 10.5%. It was slightly lower than analysts had anticipated. This marked the second consecutive month that the rate fell. In November, it experienced a drop from a 41-year-high to 10.7%.
In another overnight trading, U.S. stock futures were slightly higher on Wednesday morning. At the same time, Asia-Pacific shares mostly traded higher despite the Bank of Japan’s announcement that it would not change its yield curve control policy. Following the release of the Dutch food delivery service’s second-half earnings and a commitment to prioritizing profitability over growth, Eat Takeaway shares increased 10% by mid-afternoon Wednesday.
On the strength of improved supply chain conditions, fellow countryman ASMI, a semiconductor company, also increased more than 10% after exceeding fourth-quarter earnings expectations.
Following its full-year earnings report, Swedish private equity firm EQT dropped 7% to the bottom of the Stoxx 600.
The annual inflation rate in the U.K. decreased to 10.5%, slightly less than analysts had predicted. It was the second consecutive month that the rate declined after dropping from a 41-year high to 10.7% in November. According to the U.K.’s Office for National Statistics, the largest partially offsetting upward contributions to the change came from rising prices in restaurants and non-alcoholic beverages and food. Moreover, the largest partially offsetting downward contributions were transportation, clothing and footwear, and recreation and culture.