(Sharecast News) - European stockmarkets were broadly higher at lunchtime on Friday as investors were encouraged by warm words from the White House on a new stimulus package.
The pan-European Stoxx Europe 600 index was still up 0.31%. The FTSE 100 and CAC 40 were both higher, while the DAX, IBEX and MIB all lower.
US stock futures were higher with Dow Jones up more than 100 points, while while S&P 500 and Nasdaq-100 futures were also higher.
Traders and investors have become less worried about any potential contest over the US presidential election outcome and have also feel a major fiscal relief package will be agreed irrespective of who wins the White House.
President Donald Trump on Thursday said stimulus talks with House Democrats had become more productive, despite his abrupt decision earlier in the week to call them off.
"We're starting to have some very productive talks," Trump said during a telephone interview.
House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi later said she still wanted a larger Bill, when asked if she would accept a stand-alone relief package aimed for faltering airlines.
There was disappointing data from the UK, where the much-hoped-for "V" shaped recovery from the Covid-19 lockdown looked increasingly inverted as August GDP came in lower than expected.
Britain's economy grew just 2.1% in August against forecasts of 4.6%. It was the slowest gain since the lockdown was imposed in late March. GDP is still 9% lower than pre-pandemic levels - the largest of any G7 nation.
In corporate news, markets were helped by three big name stocks raising earnings guidance for the year. jewellery maker Pandora, fashion seller Zalando and pharma group Novo Nordisk.
Total, Royal Dutch Shell and BP all rose more than 1%, while Rolls-Royce was again the top riser, gaining 19%.
Oil stocks benefited from supply cuts caused by a storm in the Gulf of Mexico and a strike of offshore workers in Norway.
Investors have been bargain hunting this week, picking up heavyweight stocks on hopes of a return to global growth at some point.
Shares in TP Icap fell after the company said it has agreed to buy Liquidnet Holdings for up to $700m (£541m) to accelerate the modernisation and diversification of its business.
London Stock Exchange stock rose as the bourse agreed to sell Borsa Italia to Euronext in a €4.3bn deal. Euronext was lower on the news.
LONDON, May 17 (Reuters) - British businesses ramped up their search for new staff as pubs, restaurants and other hospitality and travel firms got ready for Monday's lifting of coronavirus restrictions in England, a survey showed.But an exodus of ...