Paris (AFP)

The Paris Bourse suspended its judgment (+ 0.02%) Friday at midday, time to reassess the risks associated with the coronavirus while new cases of contamination have been recorded outside of China.

At 1.35 p.m. (12.35 GMT), the CAC 40 index glistened 1.37 points to 6.063.67 points, in a trading volume of 1.5 billion euros. The day before, it had ended in decline of 0.80%.

The Parisian rating, after opening lower, reduced its losses during the morning until it returned slightly to the green.

For its part, Wall Street was moving towards an opening in negative territory. The futures contract on the Dow Jones Industrial Average index fell by 0.31%, that of the broad S&P 500 index by 0.36% and that of the highly technological Nasdaq by 0.44%.

The appearance of new cases of contamination with the coronavirus in South Korea, in Iran, as well as in Chinese prisons, revived Friday concerns over the spread of an epidemic which has already killed more than 2,200 people.

The World Health Organization (WHO) is now calling on the international community to "strike hard" against this virus, which has infected more than 75,000 people in China and 1,100 elsewhere to date. Because if the number of new daily cases in China had decreased for four consecutive days, it started to rise again (with at least 889 new cases against 673 the day before), according to the Chinese authorities.

"There is no doubt that Chinese growth will begin in the first quarter," commented in a note Thierry Claudé, deputy director of Kiplink Finance.

"The weight of the Chinese economy is now major (...) and even if the epicenter of the health crisis is in Hubei, three-quarters of the Chinese economy are affected by measures to restrict production and traffic, "he added.

"If markets can accommodate a temporarily shutdown China, it is unlikely that any support from governments or central banks will succeed in quelling fears of a global disruption in supply chains if never other countries had to take drastic measures of containment ", noted for his part Tangi Le Liboux, a strategist of the broker Aurel BGC.

- Acceleration of private activity in the euro zone -

In China, car sales collapsed 92% year on year in the first 15 days of February, announced on Friday a professional federation, the world's largest automotive market remaining paralyzed by the epidemic of the new coronavirus.

As for indicators, the growth of private activity in the euro zone accelerated slightly in February, and even reached a peak of six months despite the coronavirus epidemic, according to a first estimate of the PMI composite index published on Friday by Markit firm.

In France, it recovered, supported by services which compensated for the contraction in the manufacturing sector, which was penalized in particular by the coronavirus epidemic while it confirmed its rebound in the United Kingdom.

Resales of homes for January in the United States are also expected.

In terms of values, Sopra Steria rose 7.43% to 154.70 euros, benefiting from a net profit of 160.3 million euros in 2019, up 28.1%. The group will also strengthen its position in the insurance and social protection sector by acquiring Sodifrance.

Valeo fell 3.38% to 26.62 euros after a 43% drop in net profit, to 313 million euros in 2019, the automotive supplier, however, announced a sharp recovery in its cash flow.

Genfit lost 3.52% to 15.89 euros while biotech announced Thursday in a statement that the revelation of data from its Phase III RESOLVE-IT, treatment for liver disease and fibrosis, "will be postponed so as to incorporate the latest comments from the FDA expected at the end of March. "

© 2020 AFP