In the wake of the renewed tensions over the North Korean crisis, investors have acted cautiously on weekends at European stock exchanges. Although the EuroStoxx50 closed at the highest level for three months; but at the end of the day there was only a small gain of 0.05 percent to 3541.42 points. On weekdays, the leading index of the Eurozone shares rose by 0.7 percent.
With the threat of a hydrogen bomb exploding over the Pacific, the Asian country had dangerously heightened the “cold war” with the US around its atomic program.
The leading index of the London Stock Exchange was able to increase more strongly with a rise of 0.64 per cent to 7310.64 points. This was supported by the weaker British pound against the euro and the US dollar. In Paris the leading index CAC-40 rose by 0.27 percent to 5281.29 points.
The movements of the industry indices were low: the travel and leisure sector was the top performer with an increase of 0.42 percent.
Top performers in the French leading index and also in EuroStoxx50 were the shares of L’Oreal, which grew 2.46 percent. The death of Liliane Bettencourt, announced by his family Thursday after the closure of the stock market, triggered, after the reopening of the markets Friday morning, strong reactions. L’Oréal, in which Bettencourt family is the largest shareholder, jumped 5.9% on the Paris stock exchange. The death of the only daughter of Eugene Schueller, founder of the world’s leading cosmetics company, has revived speculation about the evolution of shareholding. At the same time, for the same reasons, the share price of Nestlé, L’Oréal’s second largest shareholder, increased by 1% on the Zurich Stock Exchange, as did that of the Sanofi pharmaceutical company, which L’Oréal owns 9.15 %.
An endorsement signed in 2014 to this 40-year-old pact contains a ceiling on the respective shares of the Bettencourt and Nestlé, which will expire six months after the death of Mrs. Bettencourt. This was enough to revive the recurring speculation about the intentions of Nestlé and the heirs of Liliane Bettencourt, who in turn hold about 33% of the capital of the world number one cosmetics.
Shares of Nokia fell by 1.37 per cent. The French investment bank Exane BNP downgraded the stock from “Neutral” on “Underperform”.