European shares opened higher on Wednesday, bolstered by China’s move to exempt some US goods from additional tariffs, the latest sign that a prolonged trade war between the two sides is cooling.
Trade-sensitive German shares led gains, with traders continuing to rotate into battered stocks such as autos and banks from defensive sectors. The pan-European Stoxx 600 index was up 0.3 per cent in early trade.
China’s finance ministry said on Wednesday 16 types of US goods would be exempted by additional retaliatory tariffs from September 17th, further buoying investor sentiment.
All eyes are now on the European Central Bank’s monetary policy meeting on Thursday, where it is widely expected to cut interest rates and restart an asset purchase programme. However, analysts have warned that market expectations on the extent of the stimulus could be too high.
Debt-laden French retailer Casino was the top gainer on Stoxx 600, up 4.4 per cent, on a report that rival Carrefour is weighing a possible bid potentially through an all-share deal.
In Shanghai, China stocks ended down on Wednesday, after a senior White House adviser played down expectations of fresh trade talks, while the market reacted coolly to a largely symbolic pledge to further liberalise the country's financial markets.– Reuters