Pan-European stocks 600 hovered around the flat in early trading, with oil and gas falling 0.9% while household goods falling 0.7%.
The European Union on Thursday urged the UK to abandon its plan to re-emphasize the Brexit withdrawal agreement and threatened legal action, but Britain’s Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s government promised to go ahead with its internal market bill Done, despite acknowledging that the move violates international law.
On the data front, the UK economy grew 6.6% on a monthly basis in July, according to preliminary estimates published on Friday as the economy seeks to recover from a sharp decline due to coronovirus-induced lockdown measures.
In corporate news, Anglo-Australian mining headline Rio Tinto has announced its departure following an extensive shareholder campaign with two senior executives of the company focusing on the demolition of two tribal rock shelters.
Meanwhile, Louis Vuitton’s owner is countering LVMH takeover target Tiffany, alleging that the US jeweler’s mismanagement through the coronavirus epidemic invalidated the $ 16 billion takeover agreement. Tiffany had already filed a lawsuit against LVMH for withdrawing from the deal.
Altice Europe shares rose 25% when the French telecom firm agreed to offer a 2.5 billion euro ($ 2.95 billion) takeover with its founder and majority shareholder, which plans to delist the company .
At the other end of the European blue-chip index, German braking system manufacturer Nor-Bremme fell 8%, with majority shareholder Heinz Hermann Thiele selling 10 million shares in the company.