Written by Bansari Mayur Kamdar and Shriyashi Sanyal
(Reuters) – European stocks closed near a nine-month high on Friday, supported by health and banking stocks and upbeat economic data from the United Kingdom.
The STOXX 600 rose 0.5%, outperforming US indices after the start of the earnings season, with mixed bank results. The European index ended higher for the second consecutive week, with a gain of 1.8%.
European banking shares rose 0.8%.
The UK’s FTSE 100 advanced after data showed that the British economy expanded 0.1% in November, boosted by support from the drinks sector during the World Cup and video game sales, reducing the chance the country is already in recession.
In Germany, data showed that the economy must have stagnated in the fourth quarter of last year and grew by 1.9% in 2022, indicating that Europe’s largest economy may escape recession during the winter (in the northern hemisphere) .
European stocks got off to an optimistic start to the year in January after data indicated slowing inflation in the eurozone and the United States, which could allow central banks to ease the pace of monetary tightening.
(Reporting by Bansari Mayur Kamdar and Shriyashi Sanyal in Bengaluru, Editing)
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