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Europe Markets: Strong earnings from Apple, Nokia and more lift European stocks and U.S. equity futures

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European stocks climbed on Thursday, as investors reacted to strong earnings from Nokia, Unilever and Royal Dutch Shell, while U.S. equity futures climbed on the heels of upbeat results from Apple and Facebook.

The Stoxx Europe 600
SXXP,
+0.40%

rose 0.5% to 442.30, poised for its best session in five, though the German DAX
DAX,
-0.38%

was flat after a surprise rise in jobless claims. The French CAC
PX1,
+0.44%

and the FTSE 100
UKX,
+0.71%

rose 0.6% each, helped by gains for major oil companies.

S&P 500
ES00,
+0.71%

and Dow Jones Industrial Average futures
YM00,
+0.44%

climbed 0.6% and 0.4%, while Nasdaq-100 futures
NQ00,
+1.10%

climbed 1% after upbeat results from device maker Apple
AAPL,
-0.60%

and social-media platform Facebook
FB,
+1.16%
.
Stocks slipped on Wednesday, even after the Federal Reserve pledged to keep monetary policy accommodative, but investors are worried that inflation will rise as the economy recovers, forcing the central bank to shift its stance sooner or later.

Elsewhere, in his first address to Congress, President Joe Biden proposed an expansive $1.8 trillion spending to address child care, education, and paid family leave, to be funded by tax hikes on wealthy Americans.

Government bond yields inched up on both sides of the Atlantic on Thursday. Investors are waiting for weekly jobless claims in the U.S. Some downbeat news came from Germany, where jobless claims rose by 9,000 in April, after a 6,000 drop in March and forecasts for a 10,000 drop.

Nokia
NOK,
-0.47%

NOKIA,
+15.58%

led a barrage of earnings, with shares of the Finnish telecoms equipment maker reporting forecast-beating profit and revenue and backing guidance for 2021 and 2023. Shares led the Stoxx 600 with a 13% jump.

The energy sector saw a crop of upbeat results. Shares of Royal Dutch Shell
RDSA,
+1.17%

RDS.A,
+1.45%

climbed 1.5%, as the company reported stronger first-quarter earnings, as oil and gas prices continued to recover. France’s Total
FP,
+1.18%

TOT,
+2.59%

reported similarly strong results and shares also rose 1.5%. And Equinor
EQNR,
+3.34%

EQNR,
+2.27%

shares jumped 2.4%, after the state-owned Norwegian multinational energy group swung to a net profit and lifted its dividend.

Elsewhere, consumer-goods giant Unilever
UL,
+0.53%

ULVR,
+3.48%

said adverse currency effects hit turnover in the first quarter, but that full-year sales should meet multiyear growth targets, and a share-buyback program will begin next month. Unilever shares jumped 1.5%.

Shares of Airbus
AIR,
+1.99%

climbed 2.7% after the aerospace giant swung to a net profit in its first quarter and confirmed its guidance for 2021.

Deutsche Lufthansa
LHA,
-3.11%

said it expects a significant rebound in air travel in the second half of the year, after booking a narrower net loss in the first quarter. But shares of the German airline slipped 0.4%, after it said second-quarter demand will pick up only gradually. Analysts are also watching out for a possible capital increase.

Semiconductor manufacturer STMicroelectronics
STM,
-2.97%

STM,
+3.75%

reported higher net profit and revenue for the first quarter amid strong demand for chips during a global shortage. Shares slipped 0.7%.

Clariant
CLN,
-3.52%

reported a profit rise and said it expects to achieve above-market growth, higher profitability, and stronger cash generation in the medium term from its continuing businesses. Shares of the Swiss chemical group fell 2.7%.

BASF
BAS,
-2.00%

BASA,
-2.22%

reported a strong rise in sales and earnings in the first quarter, and lifted its guidance for the full year as the global economy is expected to improve. Shares of the German chemicals company fell 1.8%

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