Europe Stocks Hold Steady With Market Bulls Keeping `Upper Hand'

(Bloomberg) -- European shares held steady after a positive start to the week in Asia, while the banking sector added to Friday’s sharp rally ahead of quarterly results from a number of big U.S. lenders.

The Stoxx Europe 600 Index was little changed in early trade, with the Stoxx bank index up 0.8 percent. The media sector was also among the strongest, with Publicis Groupe SA up 2 percent after saying it will pay $4.4 billion in cash to purchase Alliance Data Systems Corp.’s marketing unit Epsilon.

“The equity market bulls continue to have the upper hand, running victory laps last week supported by positive data from China and better U.S. corporate earnings than expected,” said Martin Guri, head of Nordic strategy at Kepler Cheuvreux.

Europe Stocks Hold Steady With Market Bulls Keeping `Upper Hand'

The main talking point among investors is still the progress in trade talks between China and the U.S., according to Guri. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said that the U.S. is open to facing “repercussions” if it doesn’t live up to its commitments in a potential trade deal with China.

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