European stocks climbed but the euro fell in early trading on Monday as markets looked for concrete action on tackling the eurozone's debt crisis following political upheaval in Italy and Greece.
Milan stocks shot higher after ex-European commissioner Mario Monti's nomination to head a new Italian government, while there were solid gains for equities in London, Frankfurt and Paris.
But the euro eased against the dollar, after rising in Asian trading hours, as dealers awaited an Italian bond auction at 1000 GMT.
In Greece, new prime minister Lucas Papademos must begin implementing measures needed to secure the next instalment of an international loan as he takes charge of the debt-wracked nation this week.
"The sentiment in relation to the eurozone debt crisis has improved and the change in governments in Greece and Italy may well result in a further improvement in the early part of this week," said Derek Halpenny, European head of global currency research at The Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ.
"However, we doubt very much that these changes in governments will be enough to stabilise confidence for long," added the London-based analyst.
In foreign exchange trading, the euro was down at $1.3730 compared with $1.3739 dollar late in New York on Friday.
On stock markets, London's FTSE 100 index rose 0.18 percent from Friday's closing level to reach 5,555.36 points, Frankfurt's DAX 30 won 0.14 percent to 6,066.14 points and in Paris the CAC 40 gained 0.18 percent to 3,155.08.
Milan stocks rallied 1.44 percent.
Asian markets closed higher on Monday, with Tokyo advancing 1.05 percent and Hong Kong rallying 1.94 percent, as Italy's new leader vowed to pull the debt-laden country back from the brink of a fiscal disaster.
Monti was nominated on Sunday to replace Silvio Berlusconi as prime minister and he pledged to get to work on tackling a crippling debt crisis in the country, the eurozone's third-biggest economy.
Regarding Greece, the German and French leaders have said that Athens has to ratify a bailout deal agreed at an EU summit last month before Greece can receive the eight-billion-euros ($11 billion) loan tranche to avert default.
"Investors are thinking these political developments (in Greece and Italy) will help Europe find a way out of its debt crisis," said Peter Copeland, senior institutional trader with Sydney-based brokerage BBY.
"(But) a lot of people will see these developments as just kicking the can down the road."