April 14, 2016 / 11:12 AM / 2 years ago

European stocks steady at one-month highs after mixed earnings

(ADVISORY- Reuters plans to replace intra-day European and UK stock market reports with a Live Markets blog on Eikon - see cpurl://apps.cp./cms/?pageId=livemarkets for site in development. See the bottom of the report for more details) Adds details, updates prices)

* FTSEurofirst 300 steadies after touching 1-month high

* Burberry slumps after second-half sales fall

* Nestle gains as sales growth beat expectations

* Weak oil prices also weigh on markets

By Sudip Kar-Gupta and Danilo Masoni

LONDON, April 14 (Reuters) - European stock markets steadied on Thursday close to one-month highs amid mixed earnings updates while oil prices fell back.

The pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 index, which had risen 2.6 percent to close at its highest level since March 14, was up 0.07 percent at 1040 GMT.

The FTSEurofirst remains down by around 6 percent since the start of 2016, as concerns about a China-led economic slowdown have hit world stock markets and commodity prices, given China’s role as a major consumer of oil and metals.

Oil prices fell on Thursday as OPEC warned of slowing demand and Russia hinted that there might only be a loose agreement with little commitment at the upcoming exporter meeting to rein in ballooning oversupply.

That in turn pushed down the shares of some energy companies such as BP and Total.

“The lower oil price is not helping markets today. We’ve had a good move up of late, but there’s just a bit more caution creeping in now,” said Hantec Markets analyst Richard Perry.

Burberry slumped 6.7 percent after the British luxury goods group reported a fall in second-half sales.

“Near term, Burberry has high exposure to weakest areas of luxury demand: 38 percent of global sales to Chinese customers versus 30 percent industry average, 27 percent sales exposure to U.S.,” Liberum analysts wrote in a note, keeping a “sell” rating on Burberry.

But Nestle rose 1.9 percent after the food group confirmed its full-year outlook on Thursday after first-quarter underlying sales growth beat expectations.

Today’s European research round-up

ADVISORY- Reuters plans to replace intra-day European and UK stock market reports with a Live Markets blog on Eikon (see cpurl://apps.cp./cms/?pageId=livemarkets for site in development). In a real-time, multimedia format from 0600 London time through the 1630 closing bell, it will include the best of our market reporting, Stocks Buzz service, Eikon graphics, Reuters pictures, eye-catching research and market zeitgeist. Breaking news and dramatic market moves will continue to be alerted to all clients and we will continue to provide a short opening story and comprehensive closing reports.

If you have any thoughts, suggestions or feedback on this, please email mike.dolan@thomsonreuters.com.

Mike Dolan, Markets Editor EMEA. (Editing by Mark Heinrich)

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