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Europe stocks jump as investors hope for gradual easing of lockdown measures

Europe stocks jump

Stocks across Europe finished higher, boosted by hopes that a gradual easing in lockdown measures would pave the way for more economic activity

Stocks across Europe finished higher, boosted by hopes that a gradual easing in lockdown measures would filter through into more buoyant economic activity.

Continued optimism about the easing of lockdowns has boosted European stock markets. A number of countries have taken steps to reopen sections of their economies and there is speculation the UK could be loosening restrictions in the next few days, said David Madden, senior market analyst at CMC Markets UK.

From the other side of the globe meanwhile, data showing an unexpected increase in Chinese export figures in April also boosted sentiment.

By the end of trading, the benchmark Stoxx 600 was up 1.09% to 337.98, alongside a rise of 1.44% to 10,759.27 for the benchmark Dax and an advance of 0.50% to 17,245.04 on the FTSE Mibtel.

In parallel, front month Brent crude oil futures were off by 0.91% to $29.45 a barrel on the ICE.

Euro/dollar on the other hand drifted lower by 0.03% to 1.0831.

Industrial production in Germany collapsed at a 9.2% month-on-month pace in March (consensus: -7.0%), led by a 31% plunge in auto output, figures from the Federal Office of Statistics.

On a slightly positive note however, the rate of decline in freight activity data at German airports slowed from a 23% year-on-year pace in the second week of April to 5% at the end of the same month, analysts at Unicredit pointed out.

French output on the other hand shrank by an outsized 16.2% (consensus: -11.0%).

Italian retail sales volumes meanwhile fell at a 21.3% clip in March and were 18.4% lower on the year, ISTAT reported.

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