Europe open: Shares hit record highs on Meggitt takeover talk
European shares hit record levels at the opening on Friday, boosted by strong US markets, an upbeat outlook from sportswear maker Adidas and reports that UK aerospace engineer Meggitt could be a takeover target.
The pan-European Stoxx 600 index rose 0.36% to 442.65 points by 0753 GMT, briefly passing its April record high of 443.61 in early trades.
Wall Street stocks finished in positive territory, as the Dow Jones recorded a new record high as weekly jobless claims dropped sharply in the week ended May 1, with first-time claims hitting a new Covid-19-era low.
Initial claims came to 498,000 last week, according to the Labor Department, better than estimates for a reading of 527,000 and down from the previous week's print of 590,000, which was upwardly revised from the initially reported 553,000.
The German DAX rose 0.8%, closer to record highs boosted by Adidas and Siemens, up 2%, as it also raised its net income guidance for 2021. Official data also showed German companies increased exports for the eleventh month in a row in March, with growth coming in at 1.2%, twice the rate forecast by economists.
"The overriding market themes remain pretty well unabused: A monster commodity rally continues as the global economy heats up, and massive but messy rotation out of the tech/growth/momentum plays into more cyclical/value parts of the market," said Markets.com analyst Neil Wilson.
"Copper rallied to an all-time high, aluminium is extending gains. Palm oil 13-year high, iron ore and steel at all-time highs. There is yet room to run higher in the commodity space."
In equity news Meggitt shares surged 12% following a report that US-based Woodward could be looking to buy the London-listed aerospace engineer.
According to Dealreporter, Woodward is working with an investment bank as it considers potential deals and Meggitt is in the frame.
Shares in German sportswear company Adidas soared as the company raised its 2021 sales outlook, saying it expects strong demand for new products despite ongoing lockdowns in Europe, supply chain challenges and political tensions.
Adidas said it now expects sales to grow at a high-teens percentage rate in 2021, compared to the forecast it gave in March for growth of a mid to high teens rate, with a jump of around 50% expected in the second quarter.
French mall owner Klepierre fell 2.47% after the company cut its 2021 cashflow forecast.