European stocks higher…Pepsico to sell Tropicana, Naked
BEIJING (AP) – European stocks opened higher today while Asian markets declined as jitters about the spread of the coronavirus’s delta variant in China and the United States dented enthusiasm about strong corporate profits. In early trading, the FTSE 100 in London gained 0.3% and the DAX in Frankfurt added under 0.1%. The CAC 40 in Paris advanced 0.8%. In Asia, the Shanghai Composite Index closed 0.5% lower and the Nikkei 225 in Tokyo sank 0.5%. The Hang Seng in Hong Kong was 0.2% lower. The Kospi in South Korea gained 0.4%.
NEW YORK (AP) – PepsiCo has struck a deal with private equity firm PAI Partners to sell the Tropicana, Naked and other juice brands in North America. It also has the option to sell certain juice businesses in Europe. The agreement will give PepsiCo proceeds of approximately $3.3 billion.
SEOUL, South Korea (AP) – South Korea’s spy agency says North Korea is releasing emergency rice reserves as a heat wave and drought worsen a food shortage. North Korea’s moribund economy has been battered by the pandemic, and its food situation is expected to deteriorate further until the autumn harvest. South Korean lawmakers say the spy agency told them North Korea is sending rice reserved for wartime use to people with little food, laborers and rural state agencies.
MILAN (AP) – Automaker Stellantis says it has achieved faster-than-expected progress on synergies and record margins in its first six months as a combined company, despite suffering 700,000 units in lower production due to interruptions in the semiconductor supply chain. Chief financial Richard Palmer says Stellantis is pleased “with the speed with which the new team has begun to execute as one company, as Stellantis. The company – formed from French carmaker Peugeot PSA’s takeover of the Italian-American company Fiat Chrysler – reported net profit of 5.9 billion euros ($7 billion) in the first half of 2021. That compares with a loss 813 million euros during the same period in 2020.
FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) – Germany’s BMW is reporting 4.8 billion euros in profit for the second quarter. Today’s earnings report rounds out a strong earnings season for Germany’s three big automakers as global auto markets continue to recover from the pandemic – particularly when it comes to luxury cars. The company warned however that shortages of electronic parts could make production and sales for the rest of the year “volatile.” The quarterly profit follows strong results for Daimler AG’s Mercedes-Benz and for Volkswagen’s upmarket brands Audi and Porsche.