European stocks closed higher on Monday but gave back earlier gains driven by vaccine hopes and a flurry of M&A activity.
The Stoxx Europe 600 index
rose 0.2% after ending last week nearly 1.7% higher, the best weekly return since the week ending August 7. The French CAC 40 FR:PX1 rose 0.4%, but the German DAX
and the FTSE 100 index
European stocks faded in the afternoon despite a strong start on Wall Street. The Dow Jones Industrial Average
climbed 1.4%, or 377 points, in early trading, while the S&P 500
was 1.7% up and the Nasdaq
was 2.4% higher.
Renewed hopes over a coronavirus vaccine also helped improved sentiment at the beginning of the week.
chief executive officer Albert Bourla said in an interview Sunday that the drug maker should know if its COVID-19 vaccine candidate will work by the end of October — and if approved, it could be distributed in the U.S. by the end of the year. Pfizer is partnering with German drug maker BioNTech
on the vaccine’s development.
Oxford University also announced Saturday it would resume a trial for the coronavirus candidate it’s developing with AstraZeneca
The study was halted last week following a U.K. patient falling ill pending a review into the “unexplained illness.” Oxford University said it has been deemed safe to continue. Shares of AstraZeneca rose 0.5%.
Japanese technology conglomerate SoftBank Group Corp. announced a $40 billion deal late Sunday to sell U.K.-based microprocessor designer Arm Holdings to chipmaker Nvidia
for a mix of cash and stock.
The technology sector was also lifted by M&A, with shares of chip equipment maker ASML Holding NV
And the race for TikTok is heating up. Software group Oracle Corp.
had been tipped to take over the video-sharing app’s U.S. after China’s ByteDance apparently rejected an offer from technology giant Microsoft Corp.
But in the latest twist, Chinese state media say ByteDance has turned down Oracle as well.
Elsewhere, Euronext NV
said Monday that it has submitted a non-binding offer to acquire Borsa Italiana from London Stock Exchange Group PLC
The pan-European exchange partnered with Italian lenders Cassa Depositi e Prestiti Equity and Intesa Sanpaolo SpA
on the offer. Euronext shares slipped 2.5% and London Stock Exchange shares fell 0.8%.