Spanish stocks sank on Monday after a violent referendum in Catalonia, underperforming the wider European market as political uncertainty dented bank shares.
The pan-European STOXX 600 jumped into the fourth quarter with a 0.3 percent gain, boosted by strong travel stocks and a mining sector supported by better metals prices.
But Spain’s IBEX fell 1.2 percent after Catalans defied a police crackdown to vote for independence in a referendum the Spanish government said was unconstitutional.
Spanish banks opened sharply lower, down between 1.8 and 3.2 percent, leading the IBEX down, with shares in Catalonia-headquartered Banco Sabadell and Caixabank the worst-performing.
On the STOXX, ballpoint pen and razor maker BIC sank 10 percent after shaving its 2017 sales forecast due to weaker than expected performance in U.S. and Latin American markets.
EasyJet, Ryanair and Lufthansa were among top gainers, up between 2.9 and 5 percent after Monarch Airlines went bust, prompting Britain’s biggest-ever peacetime repatriation effort to return thousands of stranded passengers.
Reports last week said easyJet and Wizz Air were in talks to take over some of Monarch’s short-haul network. Travel and leisure stocks jumped 1.2 percent on the prospect of airlines carving up Monarch’s assets.
Gjensidige Forsikring shares gained 3.5 percent after DNB raised the insurer to a “buy”, saying its current discount to peers was unwarranted.
Aggreko sank 5.9 percent after Berenberg cut it to a “sell”.
Source: Reuters (Reporting by Helen Reid)