euro area earnings and GDP in focus

European stocks traded higher on Friday morning as investors monitored corporate earnings and economic data in the last trading session of the month.

The pan-European Stoxx 600 Index rose 0.35% with tech and bank stocks leading the way. BNP Paribas reported a decrease in net income of around 7% for the second quarter compared to the same period of the previous year. However, the French bank experienced higher trading volumes and exceeded market expectations. The stock rose 4% in the first offers.

Nokia led earnings across Europe, an increase of more than 10%, after exceeding expectations for earnings in the second quarter. The CEO said that the company is seeing concrete opportunities in the medium term due to geopolitical trends.

UBI Banca saw the biggest jump in the first offers among bank shares, up to more than 5%. The reaction follows the news that Intesa Sanpaolo has secured 90.2% of its target shares in a bid for the first.

Sharp drop in GDP in France and Germany

In France, the statistical office said that GDP fell 13.8% in the second quarter of the year, a little better than estimates, but still the worst on record. On Thursday, the German statistics office announced that the German economy contracted 10.1% in the second quarter, the worst reading since records began in 1970.

Also on Thursday, the United States reported the biggest drop in quarterly growth in history, with second-quarter GDP sinking 32.9% annualized.