European stock markets advance despite global angst

European stock markets pushed higher on Thursday, managing to shake off the pessimism around the globe. Photo: Vuk Valcic/SOPA/LightRocket via Getty Images

European stock markets pushed higher on Thursday, managing to shake off the pessimism around the globe.

In London, the FTSE 100 (^FTSE) rose 0.4% after opening, while the French CAC (^FCHI) gained 0.7% and the DAX (^GDAXI) was 0.6% higher in Germany.

Travel and hospitality shares are among the risers in London, while mining companies are lagging, following a fall in commodity prices.

Michael Hewson, chief market analyst for CMC Markets, said: “It’s all a big contrast to the optimism of the early summer, when the reopening trade for the northern hemisphere was prompting concern about an economic overheating.

“Now there appears to be a distinct chill in the air, with bond yields starting to slip back on the premise that the Fed may well delay its taper.”

Across the pond, S&P 500 futures (ES=F) and Dow futures (YM=F) were trading flat, while Nasdaq futures (NQ=F) were 0.1% lower as trade began in Europe.

The stillness in US equities comes as traders will have their eyes on US retail sales data later in the day. Analysts fear this could show evidence of further setbacks for the US economic recovery, as prices soar and the number of Delta cases continues to spread.

Read more: Oil Steadies After Drop in US Inventory, Gas Rally Spurs Gain

Asian shares gave up early gains to fall into the red again overnight, dragged by sharp declines in China and Hong Kong. This was even after a strong lead-in from Wall Street which had also pushed the dollar to the lower end of its recent range.

It came a day after economic data in China missed expectations.

The Hang Seng (^HSI) fell almost 2% on the day, with property names continuing to decline, while the Shanghai Composite (000001.SS) dipped 1.3%. In Japan, the Nikkei (^N225) fell 0.6% after hitting a 31-year high on Monday.

Kyle Rodda of IG said: “The regional issues very much revolve around continued concerns about growth, China’s crackdown on its private sector, as well the unfolding collapse Chinese property developer Evergrande group, as talks of some sort of restructuring gather steam, after a suspension in the trading of the company’s bonds were announced.

“Overall, markets in Asia, and globally at that, remain still in a very angsty environment, with volatility creeping up as calls grow for a perhaps prolonged patch of weak risk sentiment.”

Watch: JPMorgan PB ‘Very Cautious’ of China’s Property Sector