European stocks are enjoying a second consecutive day of gains after a positive day in the Asian equity markets, and a rally in the price of oil.
As of 10:40 a.m. GMT (5:40 a.m. ET) all major European bourses are at least 1.6% in the green, with most enjoying bumps in excess of 2%.
Of the biggest indices, the CAC 40, France’s benchmark index is leading the way, up by 3.14%, despite the latest flash PMI data showing that the country’s manufacturing industry has slowed significantly since December.
Spain’s IBEX 35 is a close second, gaining 260 points, or 3.08%, so far on the day, after closing Thursday up by 1.99%. Here’s how it looks right now:
In Britain, the FTSE 100 is up just over 2%, with the index’s commodity stocks continuing the rollercoaster they have been on in recent weeks. Antofagasta, the Chile-based copper miner is the biggest gainer, up to £3.86 per share, or 5.83% on the day. BG Group, BP, and BHP Billiton are also amongst the day’s winners so far.
Here’s the leaderboard for the rest of the continent:
- Eurostoxx 50 — up 2.62%
- Italy’s FTSE MIB — up 1.84%
- Switzerland’s SMI — up 2.46%
- The Netherlands’ AEX — up 2.83%
- Portugal’s PSI 20 — up 3.51%
Friday’s gains in Europe follow on from a very positive day on Thursday. Stocks in Europe first started their big jump mid-afternoon on Thursday, after European Central Bank president Mario Draghi said that there is “no limit” to what the ECB will do to reach its targets on inflation.
And on Friday morning, equities have continued their rally following a positive day in Asian trade, and a big boost to the price of oil.
Asian stocks ended the week after a wild ride, with the Nikkei 225 gaining nearly 6% at the close, just a couple of days after officially entering a bear market.
Both major oil benchmarks, West Texas Intermediate, and Brent crude, have rallied back above $30 per barrel. At the time of writing, Brent is up to $30.84, while WTI is trading at $30.91.
Elsewhere in the markets, the euro is struggling on Friday morning, falling by around 0.34% to $1.0838, down $0.0034 since the open. The pound is enjoying a slight rally this morning, up 0.30% on the dollar to trade at $1.4260.
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