European Benchmarks Mixed as Investors Weigh Corporate Earnings and Economic Data

European benchmarks were mixed at the opening to the week Monday as investors responded to a volley of corporate earnings and economic announcements. 

Core eurozone inflation in the eurozone came in ahead of expectations for the month of July, suggesting that price pressures are strengthening on the Continent even after adjusting for increases in energy prices, which helped to take some of the froth out of continental equity markets during the session. However, selling was tempered by a series of positive corporate earnings reports and a number of the broker upgrades.  

The FTSE 100 gained 0.50% in London to be quoted at 7,404 while its mid-market sibling, the FTSE 250, rose 0.31% to 19,790. Across the English Channel, the CAC 40 index slipped 0.27% to 5,117 in Paris while the DACX index dropped 0.26% to 12,130 in Frankfurt. Benchmarks were mixed in Southern Europe for the session, with the IBEX breaking even in Madrid while the FTSE MIB had posted a quarter percent gain in Milan. 

In individual stocks, emerging markets bank Standard Chartered (SCBFF) rose nearly 3% after its Asia focused rival, HSBC (HSBC) , reported a better than expected set of half year results. Standard Chartered is set to deliver its own interims on Wednesday.

HSBC saw pretax profit rise by 5% to $10.2 billion during the recent six months and announced a further $2 billion of share buybacks Monday. The shares were up just more than 2% in the last hour of trading.  

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