European stock extend gains

GMT 07:02 2016 Friday ,19 February

Arab Today, arab today European stock extend gains

European stock markets
London - AFP

European stock markets mostly rose on Thursday, building on the previous day's sharp gains, as concerns about global growth hung in the background.

Although the eurozone's main indices rallied for a second day running, London had given up some of its gains as trading entered the afternoon session.

"Whilst there has been a swift rebound by the eurozone indices, resuming yesterday's climb in the process, the FTSE is still struggling to break green ground, weighed down by its... (heavyweight) commodity sector," said Spreadex trading group analyst Connor Campbell.

While rebounding oil prices were boosting shares for energy companies, there were still large concerns over general weaker demand for commodities, especially from China.

The OECD on Thursday cut its forecast for 2016 global growth to 3.0 percent from 3.3 percent owing to disappointing data, sluggish demand, weak investment and a high risk of financial instability.

"Financial instability risks are substantial," the 34-member Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development said in its latest interim outlook, urging a strong collective response to combat sagging global growth, which it predicts will not surpass 2015's already pallid showing.

The Paris-based body trimmed its outlook for this year as growth slows in many emerging countries and advanced economies only expected to achieve modest recovery after a 2015 that saw the slowest growth in five years.

After tumbling heavily so far this year, US and European stocks had rallied Wednesday, with Paris winning 3.0 percent, as strength in Chinese equities and oil prices lifted energy and commodities shares.

Asian stocks played catch-up Thursday, with most indices across the region producing strong gains, with a surge in crude futures providing some much-needed confidence as key producer Iran praised an output freeze by Saudi Arabia and Russia.

Federal Reserve's latest policy meeting which indicated that the US central bank is unlikely to press on with further interest rate cuts any time soon also provided support to beleaguered markets.

"The Fed minutes show that it does look like they're gearing up for a slower rate hike path, which is good" for higher-risk assets, said Nader Naeimi, Sydney-based analyst at AMP Capital Investors.

"I think this rally has further to go, with the conditions set for the rebound to continue for a little while."

Traders appeared to shrug off figures earlier Thursday that showed Japan fell back into a trade deficit in January as exports to China plunged.

However Shanghai stocks closed slightly lower, ending two days of gains as tepid Chinese inflation figures in January failed to boost the market, dealers said

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