(Alliance News) - On Thursday, the Mib closed trending just below the parity line at 34,700 points, breaking a long bullish streak as trading rooms keep a close watch on -- in addition to various corporate reports -- the outlook for global interest rates, pending inflation data from major European economies and the U.S. scheduled for Friday.

Domestically, while the manufacturing confidence index exceeded market expectations at 88.6, consumer confidence unexpectedly dropped to 96.5.

Thus, the FTSE Mib marked a marginal red at 34,750.35, the Mid-Cap gave up 0.1 percent to 48,164.27, the Small-Cap picked up 0.1 percent to 28,482.94, and Italy Growth gained 0.3 percent to 8,110.54.

In Europe, Paris' CAC 40 closed up 0.1 percent, London's FTSE 100 gaudagned 0.4 percent while Frankfurt's DAX 40 rose 0.1 percent.

On the Mib, bullish session for Saipem, which rallied 3.1% to EUR2.26 per share, updating its 52-week high at EUR2.27.

Strength also on Brunello Cucinelli, up 2.5 percent to EUR106.00 per share after the previous session's 0.6 percent red.

Eni closed up 0.5 percent. Ithaca Energy said Wednesday it was in talks to combine Eni's UK operations in a deal that would see the Italian oil major acquire a near 40 percent stake in the North Sea operator in exchange.

Iveco, among many bearish performers, left 1.6 percent on the parter, breaking a seven-session bullish trend.

Stellantis, on the other hand, left 1.3 percent on the parterre, after 0.4 percent green on the eve of the day.

Hera, on the other hand, gave up 0.7 percent, after Wednesday's 0.5 percent green. The company during the week reported that it ended 2023 with a net profit of EUR417.0 million, up 12 percent from EUR372.3 million in 2022.

On the Mid-Cap, El.En. closed ahead more than 10 percent, ending the third session in a row in an uptrend.

Fincantieri - up 0.9 percent - and the Indonesian Ministry of Defense announced Thursday that they had signed a contract, as part of the collaborative relationship initiated by the Italian Ministry of Defense, for the supply of two PPA units, worth EUR1.18 billion.

Buzzi Unicem -- down 3.8 percent -- reported Thursday that it ended 2023 with a net profit of EUR967 million, which compares with EUR459 million in the previous year. Revenues rose 11 percent to EUR4.32 billion from EUR4.00 billion, with cement and clinker sales down to 26.3 million tons from 28.3 million in 2022 and concrete sales down to 10.1 million m3 from 11.5 million a year earlier.

Carel Industries, on the other hand, gave up 3.1 percent to EUR20.35 per share, after a 2.4 percent green light on eve.

Among smallcaps, algoWatt closes in the green by 7.3%, in its fifth session on the bullish side.

FNM brings home a plus 1.8 percent, on the heels of eve's 0.9 percent green, benefiting from good 2023 accounts that show consolidated net income of EUR80.9 million, up EUR12.4 million from 2022, when it was EUR68.5 million. The board proposed an ex-dividend of EUR0.0230 per share, confirming the previous year's amount.

RCS MediaGroup gave up 0.4 percent after it reported on Wednesday that it closed fiscal year 2023 with a net profit of EUR57.0 million from EUR50.1 million a year earlier and proposed the distribution of a dividend of EUR0.07 per share from EUR0.06 a year earlier. Revenues amounted to EUR828.0 million from EUR845.0 million in 2022.

Exprivia, on the other hand, gave up 7.3 percent, in profit taking after three sessions closed among bullish.

Beghelli closed down 10 percent at EUR0.2340, also profit taking after two strong bullish sessions

Among SMEs, DBA Group--best on the list with assets of more than 10%--reported Thursday that it closed 2023 with a profit of EUR4.0 million up from EUR600,000 in 2022. The board also proposed a dividend of EUR0.09 per share. In 2023, to the tune of 2022, the company had paid no dividend.

Cloudia Research, on the other hand, rallied 6.3 percent, following up on the previous two bullish daily candles.

EdiliziAcrobatica gave up 6.1 percent after announcing Thursday that it reported a net profit of EUR6.1 million in 2023 from EUR14.5 million as of Dec. 31, 2022. The company let it know that it proposed to distribute a dividend of EUR0.15 per share from EUR0.80. Consolidated revenues for the period stood at EUR158.8 million, up 18 percent from EUR134.5 million.

Cofle, on the other hand, left more than 10 percent on the parterre, with price at EUR6.45 per share, following a 2.1 percent red in the previous session.

In New York, the Dow is rising 0.1 percent, the Nasdaq is just below par, and the S&P 500 is advancing 0.1 percent.

Among currencies, the euro changes hands at USD1.0801 against USD1.0822 recorded at Wednesday's European stock close while the pound is worth USD1.2640 from USD1.2627 last night.

Among commodities, Brent crude is worth USD86.54 per barrel versus USD86.08 per barrel at Wednesday's close. Gold, meanwhile, trades at USD2,218.96 an ounce from USD2,191.90 an ounce last night.

Friday's macroeconomic calendar, with the major financial exchanges closed for Good Friday, features Japan's inflation at 0030 CET, followed at 0050 CET by Japan's industrial production and retail sales data.

At 1100 CET, from Italy, the inflation figure will be released.

From the U.S., at 1330 CET, coming up is the PCE inflation figure, while from 1620 CET onward FOMC mebers Daly and the chairman, Jerome Powell, will speak.

At 2030 CET, as usual every Friday, the COT Report will be released.

By Maurizio Carta, Alliance News senior reporter

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