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Market Update

European Stocks Climb; Earnings, Data Support

European stocks were trading modestly higher early Friday amid some upbeat economic reports and corporate results.

At the time of writing, the FTSE100 was up 0.1%, while the CAC40 Paris rose 0.9% and the DAX Frankfurt added 0.3%.

Data released today showed French consumer confidence increased more than expected in June. According to a report by INSEE, the country's consumer confidence index climbed to 82 from a revised reading of 79 in the prior month.

A separate report showed German import price index surprisingly dropped in the previous quarter to a seasonally adjusted -0.8%, from -0.4% in the previous quarter and against expectations of a gain of -0.3%.

But this failed to discourage investors as they focused on a some positive corporate announcements in the region.

Stocks on the Move

In earnings-related moves, French auto manufacturer Renault SA bounced 3.5% after the company lifted its first-half profitability at its core manufacturing division despite falling sales.

U.K. based publisher Pearson Plc. soared 5.6% despite swing to a first half loss as the firm said it was trading in line with expectations heading into the second half of the year.

BG Group Plc. was trading slightly higher after posting a higher pretax profit for the second quarter. The natural gas company also raised its interim dividend by 10% and backed its full-year guidance.

On the other side, French oil and gas giant Total SA slipped  0.2% after its adjusted net profit for the second quarter dropped 3% to 2.7 billion euros.

British Sky Broadcasting Group tumbled 2.6% after reporting results for the twelve months ended 30 June 2013. The company posted a rise in full-year profit and said it will increase investment in providing broadband-based TV services.

Among others, banking stocks were mostly higher and so were resources stocks. Notable gainers included French lenders Societe Generale SA and BNP Paribas SA, up 1.3% while German firm Deutsche Bank AG added 0.6%.

Miners Anglo American Plc. and Rio Tinto Plc. moved 1.7% and 1.2% higher respectivley even as BHP Billiton Plc. was up around a percent.