EUROPE MARKETS: European Stocks Search For Direction In Busy Session For Earnings

By Carla Mozee, MarketWatch Features Dow Jones Newswires

Euro sticking around two-year high

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European stocks swayed Thursday as investors, weighing a slew of corporate financial reports, sent shares of German lender Deutsche Bank AG down and those of Anheuser-Busch InBev SA's higher.

The Stoxx Europe 600 was up 0.1% at 382.99, but has been dipping in and out of positive territory, as have major national indexes. Basic material and health care shares fell, while telecom and consumer goods shares were among advancing sectors. The Stoxx 600 on Wednesday rose 0.5%.

Looking at notable stock moves Thursday, shares of AstraZeneca PLC (AZN.LN) (AZN.LN) sank 15% as the drug heavyweight said a Phase 3 clinical trial of its Mystic treatment for lung cancer failed to meet its primary endpoint (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/astrazenecas-mystic-cancer-drug-trial-fails-2017-07-27). Separately, AstraZeneca swung to a profit, but revenue fell (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/astrazeneca-swings-to-profit-as-revenue-falls-2017-07-27), in the second quarter

Deutsche Bank shares (DBK.XE) (DBK.XE) dropped 3.1% as year-on-year revenue fell in all three business divisions (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/deutsche-bank-profit-up-but-revenue-broadly-falls-2017-07-27) at Germany's largest lender.

"Revenues were not as universally strong as we would have liked, in large measure because of muted client activity in many of the capital markets," Chief Executive John Cryan said in a statement.

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As earnings continued to roll in, the euro held around a two-year high above $1.17 against the U.S. dollar. The dollar was broadly lower after the U.S. Federal Reserve late Wednesday struck what was seen as a somewhat cautious note on U.S. inflation (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/dollar-in-holding-pattern-as-investors-wait-for-feds-signals-on-policy-2017-07-26), a bearish tilt for the greenback.

A stronger euro can make goods produced by European exporters more expensive to purchase for overseas clients. But the widely watched Ifo Institute in Germany on Thursday (https://www.cesifo-group.de/ifoHome/facts/Survey-Results/Konjunkturtest/Exporterwartungen/Archiv/2017/Exporterwartungen-20170727.html) did note that the euro's recent gains didn't keep expectations for German exports from rising in July.

The euro fetched $1.1727, not far off from $1.1735 late Wednesday.

Stock movers: Shares of Anheuser-Busch InBev NV (ABI.BT) drove higher by 4.8% as the world's largest brewer by sales posted a surge in quarterly profit to $1.5 billion (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/ab-inbev-profit-up-despite-drop-in-us-market-share-2017-07-27). But the maker of Budweiser and Stella Artois beer also said sales continued to decline in the U.S. and Brazil, its two largest markets.

Diageo PLC shares (DEO) (DEO) leapt 6.5% as the world's largest liquor maker, whose brands include Smirnoff vodka, raised its target for profit margin growth (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/diageo-full-year-earnings-lifted-by-currency-boost-2017-07-27) as it benefitted from currency tailwinds and logged more sales.

National indexes: Germany's DAX 30 fell 0.5% to 12,250 and the U.K.'s FTSE 100 gave up 0.1% at 7,441 in a choppy session.

France's CAC 40 index rose 0.1% to 5,193.76.

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

July 27, 2017 04:59 ET (08:59 GMT)