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Europe Stocks Close Mixed as Fed Chair Powell Gets Second Term; Telecom Italia Up 30%

Michael Nagle | Bloomberg | Getty Images
  • The pan-European Stoxx 600 was flat, with travel and leisure stocks slumping 1.3% on concern about a return of Covid lockdown restrictions.
  • U.S. President Joe Biden on Monday picked Jerome Powell to continue to lead the Federal Reserve.
  • Telecom Italia shares surged 30% after the company received a buyout proposal from U.S. fund KKR.

LONDON — European stocks pared losses Monday to close mixed, as investors reacted to news that U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell has secured a second term and monitored the latest coronavirus wave.

The pan-European Stoxx 600 provisionally closed flat, with telecoms stocks climbing 1.8% to lead the gains while travel and leisure shares slumped 1.3% on concern about a return of Covid lockdown restrictions in some countries.

On Wall Street, U.S. stocks rose ahead of the holiday-shortened week stateside. U.S. markets will be closed on Thursday on Thanksgiving Day and the stock market closes early at 1 p.m. ET on Friday.

Stocks have a track record of posting gains in Thanksgiving week, which will potentially set the stage for a year-end Santa rally.

President Joe Biden on Monday picked Powell to continue to lead the Fed, assuaging investor concerns that a new central bank chief could negatively impact the U.S. economic recovery as the country emerges from the Covid pandemic and battles rising inflation.

European investors will be keeping an eye on the spread of Covid-19 across the continent after Germany and Austria re-imposed strict containment measures last week.

The big corporate news on Monday came from Italy, where Telecom Italia shares surged more than 30% after the company received a 10.8 billion euro ($12 billion) buyout proposal from U.S. fund KKR.

At the bottom of the European blue chip index, TeamViewer shares fell more than 8%.

Swiss private bank Julius Baer shed 4.8% after its trading update, while Swedish telecoms company Ericsson fell 5.6% after announcing a deal to buy cloud communications firm Vonage for $6.2 billion.

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- CNBC's Ryan Browne contributed to this market report.

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