(Alliance News) - On Friday, European stock markets -- according to the futures market -- are set for a bullish opening, Milan coping, as more and more companies' half-yearly reports begin to appear.

In economic news, Japan's growth in the three months ending June was revised downward to 1.2 percent on Friday due to weakness in domestic demand and business investment, official data showed. The preliminary figure of 1.5 percent on Aug. 15 had exceeded estimates and was the best rate since the fourth quarter of 2020 in the world's third-largest economy.

The new revised figure of 1.2 percent also fell below market expectations of 1.4 percent as households and businesses face inflation and rising energy costs.

Among companies, Saipem reported that it has been awarded two new contracts for offshore activities in the Ivory Coast and Italy, worth a total of EUR850 million.

Thus, the FTSE Mib marks a rise of 70.00 points, after having closed 0.2 percent in the red at 28,155.58 last night.

The Mid-Cap last night closed down 0.1 percent to 41,333.15, the Small-Cap down 0.7 percent to 26,685.28, and Italy Growth in the red 0.4 percent to 8,764.21.

In Europe, Paris' CAC 40 is advancing 36.60 points, Frankfurt's DAX 40 is advancing 65.70 points, and London's FTSE 100 is picking up 16.40 points.

Last night on the Mib, sales on FinecoBank, which gave up 5.7 percent, despite its numbers being published. It posted robust net inflows of EUR648 million in August from EUR343 million a year ago, confirming the bank's acceleration of its growth path thanks to both new customer acquisition and a solid push into investments.

STMicroelectronics, on the other hand, retreated 4.1 percent, in its fifth session ended on the bearish side.

Azimut Holding--down 0.8 percent--reported Thursday that it recorded positive net inflows of EUR529 million in August, reaching EUR4.8 billion since the start of the year, with a full-year target of EUR6-8 billion. In August alone, 92 percent of net inflows were directed into asset management products.

Banca Mediolanum--down 0.3 percent--reported Thursday that it reported trading results of EUR387 million in August, of which total net inflows amounted to EUR225 million, bringing the cumulative figure to EUR5.39 billion since the beginning of the year. Net inflows in assets under management amounted to EUR370 million, up 24 percent from August 2022, and corresponds to EUR2.70 billion since the beginning of the year.

Prysmian Group -- up 0.5 percent -- announced Thursday that it has been awarded a new contract worth about EUR630 million awarded by Terna Rete Italia Spa, a wholly owned subsidiary of Terna Spa, the Italian operator of the high- and extra-high-voltage electricity transmission grid.

Hera, meanwhile, advanced 3.2 percent, after four sessions ended among the bearish.

On the Mid-Cap, boost on Tod's, which advanced 3.8% to EUR39.24. On the stock, it is reported that UBS raised its target price to EUR55.00 from EUR53.50 per share.

The buy side also prevails well on Saras, which marked a green of 2.4 percent to EUR1.29 per share. Of note, Marshall Wace cut its short position on the stock to 1.43 percent from 1.53 percent previously.

Gave ground, among many, to Tinexta, which posted minus 7.0% in its fifth bearish session.

Banca Ifis -- down 0.9% -- announced Wednesday of in the evening that it had completed the placement of a EUR300 million senior preferred bond issue aimed at institutional investors. The transaction is part of the EUR5 billion EMTN issuance program as set out in the bank's Business Plan covering the three-year period 2022-24.

On the Small-Cap, good session for Olidata, which took home 14 percent with new price at EUR0.45.

The Italian Sea Group -- up 6.3 percent -- on Thursday reported that its board of directors approved the consolidated half-year financial report as of June 30, which closed with group net income reaching EUR13.6 million compared to EUR7.6 million in the first half of 2022. Consolidated revenues in the first half of 2023 amounted to EUR165.9 million, up 24 percent from EUR133.6 million recorded in the first half of 2022.

Cellularline, on the other hand, gave up 11 percent to EUR2.10 per share, after a 2.5 percent decline on the eve of the day. on Wednesday, it reported figures for the first half of the year, which closed with a net loss of EUR4 million, an improvement from that for EUR43 million as of June 30, 2022. Sales revenue was EUR67.8 million, up from EUR54.6 million in the same period a year earlier.

Sales also prevailed, among the many, on Softlab, which left 5.8 percent on the parterre after a 1.2 percent green on the eve.

Among SMEs, boost on Execus, which advanced 8.2% to EUR3.30 per share.

Good buying also on Esautomotion, which closed up 5.4%, rebounding after two bearish sessions in which it gave up about 10%.

Deodato.Gallery, on the other hand, gave up 6.4 percent to EUR0.50 per share, in its fourth bearish session.

Giglio.Com, on the other hand, gave up 5.0% to EUR2.28, in its third bearish session.

Among the U.S. exchanges on European night, the Dow Jones closed in the green by 0.2%, the S&P down 0.3%, and the Nasdaq finished down 0.9%.

Among currencies, the euro changed hands at USD1.0727 versus USD1.0706 in Thursday's European stock close, while the pound was worth USD1.2509 from USD1.2485 last night.

Among commodities, Brent crude is worth USD89.41 per barrel versus USD90.50 per barrel at Thursday's close. Gold, meanwhile, trades at USD1,926.90 an ounce from USD1,919.87 an ounce on Wednesday evening.

On Friday's economic calendar, Germany's inflation figure will be due at 0800 CEST.

From the U.S., at 1600 CEST will be the wholesale sales data and at 1900 CEST will come the Baker Hughes plants report.

At 2230 CEST, as usual on Friday, the COT report will be released.

By Maurizio Carta, Alliance News reporter

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