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LVMH shares rally after strong annual results

LVMH shares rally after strong annual results
FILE PHOTO: A woman with a Louis Vuitton-branded shopping bag looks towards the entrance of a branch store by LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton in Vienna, Austria October 4, 2018. REUTERS/Lisi Niesner Copyright Lisi Niesner(Reuters)
Copyright Lisi Niesner(Reuters)
By Reuters
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PARIS (Reuters) - LVMH shares surged higher on Wednesday after LVMH struck a "cautiously" confident tone for the year and said sales had picked up in China in the fourth quarter.

LVMH shares were up by around 5 percent in early session trading, lifting up the shares of other rival luxury goods companies such as Kering, Hermes and Burberry.

The group's stock price was also on track for its best daily performance since July 2016.

LVMH's results, published late on Tuesday, also showed that growth had picked up at its Louis Vuitton megabrand.

"LVMH reported good full year results and provided full year 2019 outlook comments that we believe will be well received by the market and should bode well for the sector," wrote Deutsche Bank analysts, keeping a "hold" rating on LVMH shares.

LVMH, also home to fashion brand Givenchy and champagne label Moet & Chandon, reported revenues of 13.7 billion euros ($15.7 billion) the October-December period.

For the full year, LVMH's operating income rose 21 percent to a record 10 billion euros, while it also hiked its 2018 dividend to 6 euros per share from 5 euros in 2017.

LVMH's billionaire boss Bernard Arnault said late on Tuesday that LVMH was confident over 2019 although he added LVMH could "not control" the global environment.

"Management is seeing no China slowdown with January strong with ever-optimistic Arnault expecting a crisis but not this year. Strong, for now at least," wrote brokerage Jefferies, keeping a "buy" rating on LVMH shares.

(Reporting by Sudip Kar-Gupta; Editing by Sarah White/Leigh Thomas)

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