Market decline

Strong results help limit decline in European stock markets

European companies, including recruiter Randstad, household products giant Unilever and truck maker Volvo, reported better-than-expected results on Thursday, helping to limit the decline in markets.

The Stoxx Europe 600 SXXP,
+ 0.63%
slipped 0.2%, inspired by weakness in US ES00 equity futures,
+ 0.04%.

Unilever ULVR,
+ 0.48%
Shares climbed 2% after posting underlying sales growth of 2.5% in the third quarter, helped by price increases of 4.1%.

Randstad RAND,

stocks climbed 6% after posting a stronger-than-expected rise in underlying earnings before interest, taxes and depreciation.

Volvo VOLV.B,
shares edged down after the truckmaker also beat its profit forecast, with truck deliveries rising 17%.

CD Project CDR,
+ 0.73%
shares slipped 8% after delaying next-gen versions of Cyberpunk 2077 and Witcher III.

Zur Rose ROSE,
+ 0.69%
stocks fell 8% after slashing its forecast for sales growth this year to 15% from 20%. Sales growth in Germany, which switched to electronic prescriptions, slowed to 15% from 36% in the second quarter.

Hydrogen producer Nel NEL,
jumped 15% after reporting revenue growth of 55% – beating estimates by around 25% – and saying its pipeline of potential orders was over $ 6 billion. “Obviously, Nel won’t win all 800 projects, but the scale of the increase provides useful context for the direction of the industry journey,” analysts at Berenberg Clean Energy said.

According to FactSet, the Stoxx Europe 600 companies are now expected to experience growth in earnings per share of 51% in the third quarter, up from an estimated 40% growth at the end of June.