August 7, 2019 / 7:30 AM / 18 days ago

Chemical deals lift European shares, banks weigh

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Aug 7 (Reuters) - European shares rose on Wednesday after three sessions of losses as deal-making activity in the chemical sector helped offset pale earnings from banks in the region, with U.S.-China trade worries lingering.

German chemical groups Bayer and Lanxess agreed to sell chemical park operator Currenta to Macquarie Infrastructure and Real Assets (MIRA) for an enterprise value of 3.5 billion euros ($3.9 billion).

Shares of both companies were up between 1.7% and 3%, with the chemical sub-sector leading gains.

The pan-European STOXX 600 index rose 0.3% after a volatile session on Monday with Germany’s trade-sensitive DAX shrugging off dire industrial output data.

Banks moved lower, with Italian banks weighing after mixed earnings from the country’s top lenders.

The country’ biggest bank by assets UniCredit lagged after it cut its revenue target for 2019 due to expectations interest rates would remain lower for longer, but shares of Banco BPM rose 3% after it reported a sharp rise in net profit.

Also weighing on banks was Commerzbank, after the German lender said its target for a slight increase in full-year net profit had become “significantly more ambitious”.

London’s FTSE 100 underperformed as mining heavyweight Glencore Plc fell after reporting a 32% drop in first-half core profit. (Reporting by Agamoni Ghosh in Bengaluru; editing by Patrick Graham)

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