Europe close: Stocks slip as US jobs data sends Treasury yields higher
European shares slipped on Thursday as investors remained cautious amid inflationary concerns, despite a deluge of corporate news and takeover speculation around UK packaging firm DS Smith.
The pan-European Stoxx 600 index dipped 0.36% to 411.73, although mining stocks were in demand as Anglo American cashed in on the commodity price boom with better-than-expected annual results.
Germany's Dax meanwhile retreated 0.69% to 13,879.33, although Spain's Ibex 35 perked up 0.58% to finish at 8,317.8.
Critically, initial weekly unemployment claims in the States surprised sprang a downward surprise, dropping by 111,000 to 730,000 from the 861,000 reported for the prior seven-day stretch.
In response, the yield on the benchmark 10-year US Treasury note extended its recent gains, climbing 13 basis points to 1.51%.
On a similar note, the European Commission's euro area Economic Sentiment Indicator rose from 91.5 to 93.1 in February, also boosting shares, while the employment expectation Index rose from to 90 from 89.1.
In equity news, Standard Chartered shares fell even as the UK lender lost restored its dividend and reaffirmed its long-term profit goals.
Shares in DS Smith were up 6% on reports rival Mondi was considering a bid.
Anheuser-Busch InBev, the world’s largest brewer, tumbled 6.2% even as it reported a higher-than-expected core quarterly profit.
Howden Joinery shares fell as the company posted a fall in full-year profit and revenue after the Covid-19 pandemic had a "significant" impact on its business.
Shares in Centrica were 3% lower after the British Gas owner reported a slide in full-year operating profits, also weighed down by Covid-19, as it paused the final dividend.