Consumer prices in France, harmonized with European Union standards, increased by 1.4% in March 2021 in annual terms. In February, consumer prices in France rose 0.8% on an annualized basis.
Five leading research institutes in Germany have worsened the forecast for economic growth in the country for the current year amid a new wave of COVID-19 incidence and the persistence of restrictive measures. In 2021, Germany's GDP is expected to rise by 3.7%, while the October forecast provided for an increase of 4.2%. Meanwhile, by the beginning of next year, the situation in the economy should normalize, according to experts. The estimate of economic growth in Germany in 2022 has been improved to 3.9% from the previously projected 2.7%.
The composite index of the largest enterprises in the region Stoxx Europe 600 rose by 0.45% to 438.55 points. Thus, the indicator renewed its all-time high at 437.23 points, set last week.
Britain's FTSE 100 rose 0.63%, Germany's DAX rose 0.3%, and France's CAC 40 rose 0.41%. The Italian FTSE MIB and the Spanish IBEX 35 were down 0.19% and 0.20%, respectively.
Shares of ABB Ltd. on Thursday rose 3.2%. The Swedish-Swiss electrical engineering concern in the first quarter increased its revenue to $ 6.9 billion from $ 6.22 billion a year earlier, preliminary data show. The operating EBITA margin was 13.5% compared to 10.2% in the first quarter last year. ABB improved its revenue forecast for 2021, now the company expects revenue growth by 5%.
Publicis Groupe SA shares gained 3.3%. The French company, one of the world's largest advertising holdings, posted 2.8% organic revenue growth in the first quarter, returning to positive momentum as the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on the company's business weakened.
Serica Energy Plc lost 2.3%. The British oil and gas company in 2020 reduced pre-tax profit to 12.5 million pounds ($ 17.2 million) from 108.8 million pounds. Serica's revenue fell by about half to £ 125.6 million. The company's production fell by 21%, prices, that is, by about 33%. At the same time, the board of directors recommended raising the dividend to 3.5p from 3p per share.
Deliveroo Holdings Plc's delivery service declined 3.8% in market value, although the company recorded a 114% year-on-year increase in first-quarter orders to 71 million. Gross transaction value (GTV) jumped 130% to £ 1.65 billion.