Europe shares edge higher but Spain stocks slide as Madrid deadline passes; ConvaTec down 21%

European markets edged slightly higher in early afternoon trade Monday as investors monitored the latest in political news coming out of Austria, Spain, and the U.K.

The pan-European Stoxx 600 was up by 0.05 percent with most sectors moving into positive territory.

Banking stocks were among the worst performers as political uncertainty impacted market sentiment. Spanish lenders Caixabank, Bankia, Banco de Sabadell and BBVA were among the top fallers on the Spanish bourse.

This comes after Catalan President Carles Puigdemont failed Monday morning to give any clarity on whether he has officially declared independence. He said, however, that he wants to meet with Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy. Spain’s IBEX was down 0.7 percent in early afternoon deals.

Utility stocks were the worst performers, dragged down by tariff cuts. The Portuguese EDP fell about 3.5 percent after the regulator cut rates for 2018-2020.

On the other hand, basic resources were the best performing stocks in mid-morning trade after positive data from China. The country saw producer price growth reaching a six-month high in September.

Looking at individual stocks, Eurotunnel rose 1.8 percent, following an upgrade by Goldman Sachs.

However, shares of ConvaTec fell more than 21 percent after the firm cut its full-year revenue forecast and said it’s been “severely” hit by supply issue at two divisions.

Shares of the French retailer Carrefour moved 1.4 percent higher on Monday after it announced that former Fnac Darty Chief Financial Officer Matthieu Malige would be its new CFO.

In other retail news, British retailer JD Sports said it will float Footasylum next month.

Meanwhile, British leader Theresa May will be making her way to Brussels on Monday to meet with Jean-Claude Juncker, the president of the European Commission, and the European Union’s chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier.

The announcement comes on the heels of news last week that Brexit negotiations between the U.K. and EU had reached a “state of deadlock,” following the fifth round of talks.

Elsewhere, investors are digesting the latest election news coming out of Austria. The country’s Foreign Minister, Sebastian Kurz declared victory for his party, the conservative Austrian People’s Party, as the political party was seen to be on track to win the election on Sunday. Kurz campaigned mostly on a tough stance against migrants.

Elsewhere, balance of trade data for the euro area showed a surplus of 16.1 billion euros in August from 17.5 billion last year. Source: CNBC