European stocks at near five-year high
EU leaders to endorse plans for structural assessments of national budgets
Eu ropean stocks rose to an almost five-year high as the region's policy makers begin a two-day summit.
The Stoxx Europe 600 Index climbed 0.5 per cent to 296.75 as of 8.11am in London, a level not seen since June 2008. Japan's Nikkei 225 Stock Average rallied 1.2 per cent.
Contracts on Standard and Poor's 500 Index added 0.2 per cent. So-called Aussie added 0.6 per cent to $1.0364 and the euro was little changed at $1.2957 after touching the lowest since December 10 yesterday.
EU leaders gathering in Brussels will endorse plans for "structural" assessments of national budgets, according to a draft statement, using code for granting countries such as France, Spain and Portugal extra time to bring down deficits.
Data in the US will probably show producer price gains increased.
"The background is very encouraging in the short term as economic indicators in the US are trending up and there's expectations central banks will keep their accommodative policies," said Alessandro Bee, an economist and fixed-income strategist in Zurich at Bank Sarasin and Cie. His firm manages about 99 billion Swiss francs (€80.2 billion).
"The risk-on sentiment is backed on the fact that tail-risks in Europe have diminished."
In China, Xi Jinping today replaced Hu Jintao as president in the country's most rapid formal transfer of power in more than a generation.
Stocks outside Japan fell for a third day, with the MSCI Asia Pacific Index excluding Japan sliding 0.3 per cent.
China will "firmly" carry out property curbs, the Securities Journal reported today.