The European markets enjoyed a relief rally at the start of the new trading week. Investors breathed a sigh of relief after the damage from Hurricane Irma over the weekend was less extensive than had been feared. Traders were also relieved that North Korea did not launch another ballistic missile over the weekend, as had been expected.
Insurance stocks were among the best performing stocks Monday. The stocks were under pressure at the end of the prior trading week, ahead of Hurricane Irma. Traders also exited safe havens, like gold stocks, in favor of riskier investments.
Investors are awaiting the results of a key vote on the European Union (Withdrawal) Bill in the U.K. Parliament. U.K. lawmakers are debating the bill in the House of Commons with a vote due later today or early Tuesday. The legislation is aimed at transferring European Union legislation into U.K. law on the day the country leaves the bloc in March 2019.
Traders are also looking forward to the policy decision from the Bank of England on Thursday.
The pan-European Stoxx Europe 600 index advanced 0.98 percent. The Euro Stoxx 50 index of eurozone bluechip stocks increased 1.38 percent, while the Stoxx Europe 50 index, which includes some major U.K. companies, added 0.94 percent.
The DAX of Germany climbed 1.39 percent and the CAC 40 of France rose 1.24 percent. The FTSE 100 of the U.K. gained 0.49 percent and the SMI of Switzerland finished higher by 0.79 percent.
In Paris, Sanofi declined 0.99 percent. The drug giant and Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, Inc. have announced that their biotech drug dupilumab to treat severe asthma has met its two primary endpoints in a late-stage Phase III clinical study.
In London, AstraZeneca rallied 2.09 percent after reporting positive results from two trials for lung cancer treatments.
British Land gained 1.67 percent and Deutsche Bank upgraded its rating on the stock to “Buy” from “Hold.”
Associated British Foods sank 4.96 percent despite the food, ingredients and retail group raising its outlook for full year results.
Carillion fell 1.62 percent after its Group Finance Director, Zafar Khan, has left the company with immediate effect. Carillion has also appointed Emma Mercer as its Chief Financial Officer with immediate effect.
Clothing retail firm H&M advanced 2.92 percent in Stockholm after a rating upgrade from Credit Suisse.
Pharmaceutical company Lundbeck plunged 13.82 percent in Copenhagen after announcing changes in executive management.
The French economy is…