European stocks little changed as miner gains offset bank drop

Frankfurt - European stocks were little changed, after posting their best week since July, as gains in commodity producers offset declines in banks.

The Stoxx Europe 600 Index rose 0.1% to 350.92 at 8:22 a.m. in London. The equity gauge on Friday jumped to its highest level since April after US data signalled the labour market is holding steady, while not pushing the case for an imminent rate increase.

Equities had been languishing in lacklustre trade up until Friday’s jobs data, as the post-Brexit rebound fizzled out amid uncertainty over US monetary policy, mixed economic data and oscillating oil prices.

The odds of a Federal Reserve hike in September have slipped to 32% and December is the first month with better-than-even bets of a move. Investors will now turn their focus to this week’s European Central Bank meeting. US markets are shut today for a holiday.

BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto Group led miners higher. Among banks, Lloyds Banking Group Plc and Barclays were the biggest decliners.

Among stocks moving on corporate news today, SFR Group jumped 6.8% after Patrick Drahi’s Altice agreed to buy the 22% of the company that it didn’t already own for €2.4bn. Altice gained 5.1%.

Hunting dropped 2.2% after the energy company reported its first-half loss widened from a year ago.

Zodiac Aerospace slid 3% after the aircraft-seat manufacturer said its operating income will be about 10% lower than analysts estimate due to higher litigation provisions and continued weakness in the helicopter market.

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