European Shares Inch Higher On Growth Optimism

European stocks advanced on Monday as strong U.S. jobs data released last week coupled with encouraging data releases from Germany and France helped boost investor confidence in the global economy.

The pan-European Stoxx Europe 600 index was up half a percent at 384.38 in late opening deals after rising 0.2 percent on Friday.

The German DAX was rising 0.2 percent, France’s CAC 40 index was gaining 0.6. percent and the U.K.’s FTSE 100 was moving up 0.3 percent.

The pound rose against both the dollar and the euro as the resignation of Brexit secretary David Davis helped fuel expectations that a soft Brexit was more likely.

Mining giant BHP Billiton rallied 2 percent on the buzz that BP could buy its U.S. shale assets.

Gold mining firm Centamin slumped 6 percent after reporting a significant drop in gold production for the second quarter from its Sukari Gold Mine in Egypt.

Cairn Energy climbed 2.2 percent after issuing an update on its ongoing arbitration with the Government of India under the UK-India Bilateral Investment Treaty.

Hikma Pharma tumbled over 3 percent after it signed a licensing and distribution agreement with Omega Pharma.

Elior Group advanced 1.5 percent. The French operator in the catering and support services has launched an offer to purchase minority interests of Elior North America.

Air France KLM soared almost 8 percent after reporting 4.5 percent growth in passenger traffic for June.

French carmaker Renault dropped 1.5 percent after its partner Nissan Motor said it would hold a press conference regarding procedures to measure vehicle exhaust gas at its domestic plants.

On the data front, German exports grew by more-than-expected 1.8 percent on a monthly basis in May, reversing a 0.3 percent drop in April, figures from Destatis showed. Shipments were expected to gain only 0.7 percent.

Separately, survey data from think tank Sentix revealed that Eurozone investor sentiment improved in July after a sharp slide in June. The investor confidence index rose unexpectedly to 12.1 from 9.3 in June. The expected score was 9.0.

France’s economy is set to expand as previously estimated in the second quarter, according to a monthly survey from Bank of France. The central bank forecast 0.3 percent growth for the second quarter, the same rate as estimated previously.

by RTTNews Staff Writer

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