UNITED STATES (OBSERVATORY) – European shares closed lower on Friday, but for the eighth straight week of gains on gains in energy stocks and concerns over Italian anti-institutional parties vowed to increase public spending in a planned new government.
The Stoxx 600 European session ended the session down 0.3 percent, but remains close to its highest level in more than three months and ends the week on an increase of 0.5 percent.
The last time Stokes rose for eight consecutive weeks was in May 2014. After a turbulent start to the year, European stocks rose as oil prices rose to $ 80 a barrel, prompting investors to increase their exposure to the energy sector.
The oil and gas sector index has gained more than 14 percent since the start of the year, driving gains in European sectors. The sector caught a breath on Friday, with oil majors Eni, Royal Dutch Shell and Total closing up 0.5 percent.
But the Italian stock index suffered another loss. The index fell 1.5 percent as investors worried that a deal by a government coalition between two anti-institutional parties could reduce financial discipline in the euro zone’s third-largest economy.
Italian banks, which are an indicator of political risk in the country because of their holdings of government bonds, were hurt, with the sector index down 3.1 percent.
Shares also made big moves thanks to business results reports.
Richmond fell 5.2 percent after the luxury goods group posted a lower-than-expected net profit, partly because of the buy back.
Strong results from Ubisoft, France’s largest video game maker, pushed a record high of 4.47 percent.
Britain’s FTSE 100 <.FTSE> was down 0.12 percent, Germany’s DAX <.AX> 0.28 percent and France’s CAC 0.13 percent.