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European Stocks to Watch: Compass Group

CNBC.com
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Shares of caterer Compass Group gained 5.78% in midday London trading Thursday after it reported that trading in the first 5 months of the year has been ahead of its expectations and the sale of its European vending business is progressing.

The stock was the biggest gainer on the FTSE-100.

Revenue growth for the six months ending March 31 are predicted to be in the mid-single digits, with gross margin up 0.6% for the period, Reuters reported.

This morning, Credit Suisse upgraded the stock to "outperform" from "neutral."

Also active in European trading:

Tate & Lyle (up 4.96%) Shares of the British sugar and sweetener group were up after the company announced that trading was back in line with expectations and ahead of the prior year, following its surprise profit warning in late January.

Clarins (up 2.95%) The French beauty group announced late Wednesday that Serge Rosinoer is to succeed the company’s founder, Jacques Courtin, as supervisory board chairman.

ARM (up 2.85%) Chip maker ARM Holdings strengthened after the stock was upgraded to 'buy' from 'hold' at UBS.

Bonduelle (down 3.64%) Shares went lower after Exane BNP Paribas downgraded the stock to ‘neutral’ from ‘outperform’ in the wake of the company’s first-half results.

Kingfisher (down 3.23%) Home improvements retailer Kingfisher posted an 11% drop in full-year profit due to debt-laden British shoppers limiting spending and competition in France intensifying.

SAP (down 0.77%) SAP’s shares dipped after the company’s software chief and executive board member Shai Agassi quit unexpectedly late Wednesday.