Mario Draghi, President of the European Central Bank (ECB)
London - Arab Today
Europe's main stock markets rebounded with sharp gains on Friday, extending the volatility seen since the European Central Bank unveiled fresh stimulus measures the day before.
Frankfurt's DAX 30 index rose by 2.5 percent and the Paris CAC 40 index briefly went above 3.0 percent in late morning deals, while Madrid's IBEX 35 won almost 3.0 percent and the Milan FTSE MIB surged nearly 4.0 percent.
Outside the eurozone, London's benchmark FTSE 100 index gained 1.6 percent compared with Thursday's close, with financial and commodity stocks leading the way.
The euro fell against the dollar.
"A late rally in the US last night and firmer markets across Asia is giving (European) stocks an early boost," said City of London Markets trader Markus Huber.
European markets had finished decisively lower Thursday as initial enthusiasm about ECB stimulus was replaced with doubts about the central bank's plans and the region's outlook.
Equities had surged at first after the ECB cut its main interest rate to zero percent for the first time, and boosted the amount of cash stimulus it is pumping around the eurozone economy.
But bourses suffered a rapid downturn after the central bank cut its growth and inflation forecasts for 2016 and 2017, while ECB chief Mario Draghi said at a news conference that he did not anticipate further interest rate cuts.
In volatile trading that has become the hallmark of recent unrest across all financial markets, European stocks bounced back once more heading into the weekend break.
FXTM research analyst Lukman Otunuga wrote in a note to clients that "stock markets are still vulnerable and may be poised for further decline in the future as the ECB fiasco compounds to the ongoing global woes".
- Asia ends on high -
Asian markets ended the week on a high Friday, with an afternoon rally erasing morning losses as investors changed tack on their view of events surrounding the ECB.
Regional markets sank into the red soon after opening as Draghi's statement was seen an indication of the limitations on finance chiefs to drag the global economy out of its long-running torpor.
Observers said central banks around the world are gradually running out of weapons to kick-start their respective economies after a series of measures.
Attention will now turn to next week's policy meetings for the Federal Reserve, with hopes for some forward guidance on US interest rate policy, as well as for the Bank of Japan and Bank of England.
- Key figures around 1030 GMT -
London - FTSE 100: UP 1.6 percent at 6,130.47
Frankfurt - DAX 30: UP 2.5 percent at 9,732.09
Paris - CAC 40: UP 3.0 percent at 4,479.67
EURO STOXX 50: UP 2.7 percent at 3,050.45
Tokyo - Nikkei 225: UP 0.5 percent at 16,938.87 (close)
Shanghai - composite: UP 0.2 percent at 2,810.31 (close)
Hong Kong - Hang Seng: UP 1.1 percent at 20,199.60 (close)
New York - Dow: DOWN less than 0.1 percent at 16,995.13 (close)
Euro/dollar: DOWN at $1.1112 from $1.1183 on Thursday
Dollar/yen: UP at 113.82 yen from 113.17 yen