index futures and Asian shares also advanced. Wolseley Plc gained 2.3 percent after posting full-year earnings that beat estimates. Unilever NV (UNA) slid to its lowest price in 11 months as the worlds second-largest consumer-goods maker said sales growth slowed in the third quarter. The Stoxx Europe 600 Index added 0.3 percent to 311.36 at 9:31 a.m. in London as a report showed that manufacturing activity in the euro area expanded for a third month in September. The equity benchmark fell by the most since Aug. 30 yesterday as U.S. politicians failed to agree on a compromise budget and Silvio Berlusconi pulled his ministers out of Italys coalition government. The market is torn between the good and improving news, which weve nicknamed the global healing, and the headwinds from the political environment, Franz Wenzel, who helps oversee about $771 billion as chief strategist at Axa Investment Managers SA in Paris, said by telephone. It seems that this morning the economic healing is taking the upper hand. The Stoxx 600 gained 8.9 percent in the three months through September, its largest quarterly rally in four years, as the euro-area economy escaped from recession and the Federal Reserve decided against reducing its monthly asset purchases. Standard & Poors 500 Index futures climbed 0.5 percent today, while the MSCI Asia Pacific Index rose 0.3 percent. U.S. Shutdown U.S. lawmakers in Washington missed a midnight deadline to reach a compromise to continue funding the government. The shutdown will put as many as 800,000 federal employees out of work today, closing national parks and halting some government services.
Windows Phone gains ground in Europe
September 30, 2013 10:55 AM PDT (Credit: Josh Miller/CNET) As you might expect, new research out today shows that Android is Europe’s favorite smartphone OS by a wide mile. But Windows Phone is turning into a serious contender. According to figures out Monday from researchers Kantar WorldPanel ComTech, Android featured on just over 70 percent of smartphones sold in the three months up to August across Europe’s five biggest markets: Great Britain, France, Germany, Spain, and Italy. Equally unsurprisingly, iOS is in second position with 16 percent of the smartphone market in Europe — a year over year rise of around two percentage points for both operating systems. Windows Phone, meanwhile, continues to grow its share in the five countries, hitting 9.2 percent — around double its 5.1 percent share for the same period last year. The jump has been fueled by significant gains in the three major European markets: France, Germany, and Great Britain. In the latter, its share has risen from 4.5 percent a year ago to 12 percent today, while in Germany it’s grown from 3.8 percent to 8.8 percent — the first time it’s hit double-digit share in either country. In Germany, that puts Windows Phone only one percentage point behind iOS in market share. Related posts 15 more must-see iPhone 5S slow-motion videos “Windows Phone’s latest wave of growth is being driven by Nokia’s expansion into the low- and midrange market with the Lumia 520 and 620 handsets. These models are hitting the sweet spot with 16- to 24-year-olds and 35- to 49-year-olds, two key groups that look for a balance of price and functionality in their smartphone,” Dominic Sunnebo, strategic insight director at Kantar Worldpanel ComTech, said in a statement. And despite recent turbulence and a proposed $7.2 billion takeover by Microsoft, Nokia, Windows Phone’s main hardware champion, is growing its own market share across some of Europe’s biggest markets. (Nokia accounted for four in five of all Windows Phone device sales across the five markets.) For the three months to the end of August, Nokia bagged 7.8 percent of all smartphone sales, up from 6.9 percent a year ago, inching up on third-place Sony, whose share stands at 8.2 percent, a slight rise over a year ago. LG is also seeing something of a comeback, increasing its European share to 6.1 percent from 2.1 percent a year ago. Following its recent troubles , BlackBerry’s share has seen the biggest dip in Europe, falling from 5.8 percent of all smartphones sold in the five markets to 2.4 percent today.