World stock markets moved higher after a choppy start Tuesday as hopes for new measures to boost China’s economy outweighed worries about the health of Spanish banks and their potential to worsen Europe’s debt crisis.
Concerns about Spain’s banks have grown since Bankia, the country’s fourth-largest lender, said Friday it needed (euro) 19 billion ($23.8 billion) in state aid to shore itself up against bad loans — largely from real estate gone sour.
That magnified fears of a possible debt implosion in Europe’s weaker economies — starting with Greece, which will run out of money in the coming days without an emergency loan.
But analysts said investors were emboldened to scoop up oversold shares because of hopes that China is on the verge of more steps to shore up its fatigued economy. That helped Asian stock markets close higher and gave an early push to European shares and U.S. futures.
Britain’s FTSE 100 rose 0.3 percent to 5,369.83. Germany’s DAX added 0.6 percent to 6,360.60 and the CAC-40 in Paris gained 0.3 percent to 3,052.81.
Wall Street was headed for a higher open after a three-day holiday weekend. Dow Jones industrial futures rose 0.7 percent to 12,515 and S&P 500 futures added 0.8 percent to 1,324.80.
Stan Shamu, market strategist at IG Markets in Melbourne, said there are increasing expectations that China will relax monetary policy and announce fiscal stimulus measures. It has already made piecemeal announcements about spending and investment measures.
“This has been a predominant theme since Premier Wen Jiabao’s comments showing commitment to keep China’s growth from stalling,” he said.
Japan’s Nikkei 225 index rose 0.7 percent to close at 8,657.08 and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng gained 1.4 percent to 19,055.46.
South Korea’s Kospi climbed 1.4 percent to 1,849.91 after being closed Monday for a public holiday. China’s benchmark Shanghai Composite Index jumped 1.2 percent to 2,389.64.
Negative sentiment was also slightly assuaged by recent polls suggested an upcoming election in Greece might result in a government willing to stick to a highly unpopular austerity program.