Europe extends gains on German data, M&S tumbles – CNBC

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European stocks extended gains Wednesday, boosted by a new debt deal for Greece and rising oil prices.

The pan-European Stoxx 600 index traded up 1 percent in late morning trade with banking, autos and oil and gas sectors leading the gains, as oil prices moved close to $50 a barrel.

The London FTSE index was up 0.7 percent,the French CAC up 1 percent and the German DAX extended gains, up 1.3 percent, following a survey that showed an improvement in German business confidence.

The closely-watched Ifo Business climate index rose from 106.7 points in April to 107.7 points in May. Ifo said that “business confidence in German industry and trade has improved in all four main sectors (manufacturing, construction, wholesaling and retailing).”

Marks and Spencer reported a rise in full-year profit on Wednesday and announced plans to overhaul its clothing and homeware business, a move it warned would have an adverse effect on short-term profits. The stock tumbled 8 percent in early trade and was among the sharpest decliners by mid-morning.

Asia markets traded higher on Wednesday, with several major indexes advancing more than 1 percent each, after encouraging reports on the U.S. housing market on Tuesday propelled gains in U.S. stocks.

New home sales for April jumped 16.6 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 619,000 units in the U.S., the highest level since January 2008 and well above expectations, reported Reuters.

In other news, euro zone finance ministers agreed with Greece and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) on Wednesday on what they called a “breakthrough” deal that will address Athens’ requests for debt relief.

After late-night talks into Wednesday, the Eurogroup ministers agreed to release 10.3 billion euros ($11.42 billion) for Greece after lawmakers approved more painful austerity measures over the weekend.

Meanwhile in the U.S., St. Louis Fed President James Bullard told CNBC that a U.S. Federal Reserve rate hike in June or July wasn’t set in stone, but labor data suggested it was time to pull the trigger. “There’s no reason to prejudge June,” Bullard said, adding that the Federal Open Markets Committee would look at the data and decide then.

Europe extends gains on German data, M&S tumbles – CNBC