European stocks struggled for gains on Wednesday as investors absorbed a mixed bag of earnings from Société Générale, A.P. Moeller-Maersk and other corporates, while U.S. equity futures rose.
The Stoxx Europe 600 index SXXP, +0.23% rose 0.3% to 411 after a modest decline on Tuesday. But the German DAX DAX, -0.01% slipped 0.1% and the French CAC 40 PX1, +0.13% and FTSE 100 UKX, +0.14% were flat. Asian stocks had a robust session, with the China CSI 300 index 000300, +2.14% surging 2% ahead of the start of the China Lunar New Year holiday.
Among European stocks on the move, shares of Adyen ADYEN, +9.60% led the Stoxx 600 gainers with a nearly 10% gain after the Dutch paints company reported higher net profit for the second half of 2020 and lifted its long-term earnings margin target.
Also near the top of the gainers list, shares of Société Générale GLE, +2.67% rose around 3% after the French bank said it would launch a buyback in the fourth quarter, after net profit for the final quarter of 2020 fell less than expected and it also met guidance for 2020.
Shares of Smurfit Kappa SKG, +1.24% rose over 3% after the paper-based packaging group reported higher pretax profit and lifted its final dividend.
On the downside, shares of A.P. Moeller-Maersk MAERSK.B, -7.16% tumbled over 6%. The Danish shipping giant reported surging demand in the fourth quarter and spiking freight rates spiked due to bottlenecks across its supply chain that includes a lack of ships and containers.
Shares of Heineken HEIA, -1.55% fell more than 2% after the Dutch brewer said it swung to a loss for 2020 due to pandemic effects, but laid out a target to restore its adjusted operating profit margin to around 17% by 2023. Heineken also said it expects improving market conditions in the second half of this year.
Dutch lender ABN Amro ABN, -3.91% reported a sharp fall in fourth-quarter net profit for the fourth quarter due to COVID-19. Shares fell 2%.