(Alliance News) - The major European indexes are headed for an upward opening Monday, according to IG futures, after a positive end to the week for U.S. stock markets, while U.S. crude oil starts the day with a slight decline on hopes that Antony Blinken's efforts to convince Israel to cease fire in Gaza may bear fruit.

The FTSE Mib, therefore, is expected up 0.4 percent or 140.0 points after closing Friday up 0.9 percent to 34,249.77.

In Europe, London's FTSE 100 is expected to be in the green by 41.9 points or 0.5 percent, Paris' CAC 40 is up 34.9 points or 0.4 percent while Frankfurt's DAX 40 is given up 58.0 points or 0.3 percent.

"Just one week after posting its worst weekly loss in a year and following a week of unfavorable economic data for both the U.S. economic outlook and the Federal Reserve's expectations," comments Ipek Ozkardeskaya, Senior Analyst at Swissquote Bank, "the S&P500 posted its best performance since October 2023. The S&P500 gained nearly 3 percent last week, while the Nasdaq 100 gained much more, as the combination of slowing U.S. growth and rising inflation last week was offset by better-than-expected earnings from Microsoft and Google and the surprise jump in Tesla shares, despite missing earnings."

"As for price action," the analyst continues, "Friday's higher-than-expected core PCE print did not weigh much on investor sentiment, as most of the price action due to inflation disappointment came after Thursday's GDP report.

Among Italy's smaller listings on Friday, the Mid-Cap rose 1.6 percent to 47,118.36, the Small-Cap gained 1.4 percent to 28,684.08, and Italy Growth finished up 0.5 percent to 8,175.31.

On the Mib, Prysmian rose 3.5% but it was the banks that stole the show, with Monte dei Paschi up 4.0% and Pop di Sondrio up 3.0%.

Tenaris slumped 7.9% after reporting Thursday its results for the first quarter of the year, which ended with a profit of USD750 million, down from USD1.13 billion in the first quarter of 2023. Revenues rose to USD3.44 billion from USD4.14 billion in the same period.

Among the few bearish performers, Hera gave up 0.9 percent while STMicroelectonics lost 2.4 percent after reporting Thursday that revenues and profits fell double digits in the first quarter and that it expects revenues to decline further in the second quarter.

Revenues for the first three months fell to USD3.47 billion from EUR4.25 billion in the first quarter of 2023, an annual decline of 18 percent, and from USD4.28 billion in the fourth quarter of 2023, a quarterly decline of 19 percent.

On the cadet segment, Ariston Holding and Salvatore Ferragamo posted positive gains, up 5.3 percent and 4.4 percent, respectively.

Saras rose 0.1 percent after announcing Friday that, in connection with the prospective acquisition by Vitol BV of a stake representing about 35 percent of the share capital of Saras, the Presidency of the Council of Ministers issued a decree regarding the exercise of special powers - golden power - "containing prescriptions not impeding the completion of the transaction."

Therefore, the statement says, one of the related conditions precedent for the completion of the transaction has been fulfilled.

Shareholders of Credito Emiliano -- up 1.7 percent -- appointed the members of the new board of directors.

The new board of directors includes Paola Agnese Bongini, Enrico Corradi, Giorgia Fontanesi, Mariaelena Fontanesi, Elisabetta Gualandri, Luigi Maramotti, Alessandro Merli, Ernestina Morstofolini, Edoardo Prezioso, Anna Chiara Svelto, Giovanni Filippo Emilio Viani and Lucio Igino Zanon di Valgiurata.

Credem's board of directors, which met at the end of the meeting, confirmed Lucio Igino Zanon di Valgiurata as chairman and Enrico Corradi and Luigi Maramotti as vice chairmen.

Webuild--up 5.2 percent--reported Wednesday that it had acquired EUR5.5 billion in new orders since the beginning of the year at the end of March.

As the former Salini Impregilo explained, almost all of the new orders came from abroad, in markets such as Canada, the US, and Saudi Arabia. The significant order intake represents about 50 percent of the expected orders for the year 2024.

Added to this is a near-term commercial pipeline of more than EUR70 billion, fueled by the major investment plans launched in key markets monitored by the group, such as Central and Northern Europe, Australia, the U.S. and the Middle East.

d'Amico International Shipping rose 2.1 percent after announcing on Friday that its Irish operating subsidiary d'Amico Tankers DAC has entered into a construction contract with Jiangsu New Yangzi Shipbuilding Co. of China for the purchase of two additional new LR1 'Long Range' tankers -- 75,000 deadweight tons -- at a contract price of USD56.2 million each.

Among small caps, Itway - up 0.8 percent - ended 2023 with a pretax loss of EUR481,000 from one of EUR362,000 as of Dec. 31, 2022, while net loss was EUR330,000 from one of EUR348,000.

Revenues for the period stood at EUR49.1 million from EUR46.7 million in 2022.

Elica - in the red by 1.1 percent - on Wednesday signaled that it will start a new buyback plan from April 26 for a maximum number of buyable shares of 1 million.

Among SMEs, Illa gained 25 percent doing best of all.

Caribbean Company gave up 0.3 percent. The company reported Thursday that revenues for the first three months rose 4.2% year-on-year to EUR11.7 million from EUR11.2 million in the same period a year earlier.

Poligrafici Printing -- up 7.3 percent -- reported Wednesday that it ended 2023 with consolidated revenues of EUR24.1 million from EUR28.0 million as of Dec. 31, 2022.

Ebitda stood at EUR4.9 million in 2023 from EUR6.1 million in the previous year.

Consolidated profit for the year was EUR1.5 million from EUR2.4 million in 2022. The company proposed to pay a dividend of EUR0.03 per share from EUR0.0295 in 2022.

In Asia, the Nikkei rises 0.8 percent, the Hang Seng advances 0.9 percent, and the Shanghai Composite rises 0.8 percent.

In New York, the Dow closed up 0.4 percent to 38,239.66, the Nasdaq finished in the green 2.0 percent to 15,927.90 and the S&P finished the session up 1.0 percent to 5,099.96.

Among currencies, the euro changed hands at USD1.0726 from USD1.0677 on Friday in closing European equities while the pound was worth USD1.2537 from USD1.2452 on Friday evening.

Among commodities, Brent crude is worth USD88.71 a barrel from USD89.37 a barrel Friday night and gold trades at USD2,329.87 an ounce from USD2,339.86 an ounce Friday night.

Monday's macroeconomic calendar opens with Spanish inflation, at 0900 CEST, followed an hour later by Italy's trade balance with non-EU countries and German inflation.

Eurozone consumer and business confidence data will arrive at 1100 CEST, 10 minutes before the five- and 10-year BTP auctions and an hour before the Eurogroup meeting. At 1300 CEST, space will be given to Spanish business confidence.

Later in the day, French BTF and US T-Note auctions will also be held.

Among the companies in Piazza Affari, Digital Value, Lottomatica Group, Monrif, Softlab, TraWell Co., Xenia and Zignago Vetro will release results.

By Chiara Bruschi, Alliance News reporter

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