European shares boosted by company updates, though Pearson plummets

European shares edged higher on Wednesday in early deals, helped by a slew of well-received company results from ASML, Novozymes and Burberry, though shares in Pearson slumped after its update.

The pan-European STOXX 600 index was up 0.3 percent in early trades, while Britain’s blue-chip FTSE 100 index gained 0.4 percent, recovering some of its losses from the previous session when a rise in sterling put pressure on its dollar-earning firms.

Shares in ASML gained 4.5 percent after, hitting an all-time high after its earnings beat forecasts, while Novozymes also rose 5.2 percent after its Q4 report.

British luxury goods firm Burberry topped the FTSE 100 index, rising 1.6 percent after reporting a better-than-expected 3 percent rise in comparable retail sales in its third quarter.

Germany’s Gerresheimer was also a top STOXX riser, up 5 percent after Deutsche Bank upgraded the drugs packaging firm to “buy”.

Shares in education publisher Pearson tumbled more than 24 percent, however, on track for their biggest one-day loss ever after the firm cut its profit outlook for the next two years and said that it would have to reset its 2017 dividend.

Source: Reuters