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Home/European stocks edge higher ahead of US earnings season

European stocks edge higher ahead of US earnings season

The STOXX 600 index gained 0.16% as most regional bourses were mixed

Stocks in Europe edged higher on Monday and into record territory as a strong start to the US earnings season provided impetus for investors.

The pan-European STOXX 600 index gained 0.16% as most regional bourses were mixed. Markets had taken their cue from record highs on Wall Street.

Global stock markets remain supported by a combination of the very strong cyclical impulse as vaccinations and better economic resilience to lockdowns spur activity, ongoing monetary policy support and some pretty large fiscal stimulus in some parts of the world, most notably the US, said analyst Neil Wilson.

As highlighted by Moody's, the $5.4trn in excess savings, which is worth around 6% of global GDP, is not to be ignored as consumers come back to the fray, he said.

US bank earnings and the release of bad loan loss provisions show the extent to which aggressive policy action has stopped a lot of potential damage to the economy. A retreat in US yields has helped calm nerves but value stocks remain the play as the global economy reopens. Discretionary spend is the name of the game, Wilson said.

The furore over the creation of a European "super league" of top continental football teams saw shares in Italian club Juventus gaining 7%.

Investors were also eyeing a busy week on the US corporate calendar with Coca-Cola, IBM and United Airlines reporting today.

Investors are feeling the sugar rush as the effects of major stimulus packages begin to translate into increasing evidence of a strong economic rebound, said interactive investor head of markets Richard Hunter. In the US, the most recent data has reflected this impact, with robust showings from housing, retail sales and an improvement in the jobless claims number.

He said: Meanwhile, the US banks have also reported significant profit hikes, reinforcing hopes that the recovery is firmly on track. Corporate earnings will continue to be a near term feature of investor scrutiny, with the likes of Netflix and IBM reporting this week.