LONDON (The Deal) -- European and Asian stocks rose on Wednesday ahead of the close of a two-day Federal Reserve meeting which is expected to leave the central bank's $85 billion monthly bond buying program unchanged.
In London, the FTSE climbed 0.55% to 6,812.27, with investors in fund management companies seemingly unfazed by a British regulator's threat to restrict the fees they charge customers.
Barclays (BCS) was up more than 3% as reassuring news about its capital position offset the potential impact of a 20% decline in third-quarter pretax profit to 4.98 billion pounds ($8 billion). Restructuring costs and a 12% decrease in quarterly profit at its investment banking unit contributed to those lower group earnings. The London lender also said it was working with regulators investigating the possible rigging of foreign exchange rates across a number of banks. Confirmation of its involvement in the probe follows that of Deutsche Bank (DB) and UBS (UBS) on Tuesday.
Clothing retailer Next was up more than 6% after it raised its full-year sales and profit guidance after announcing third-quarter sales growth that was slightly above its previous estimate. It said, however, that trading was volatile throughout the third quarter.
In Germany, the Dax gained 0.32% to 9,051.11. The German unemployment rate in October held steady at 6.9% but, as measured by individuals, the ranks of jobless swelled by 2,000.
VW was up almost 4% as third-quarter profit beat estimates, thanks to cost cuts and despite falling sales.
In Paris, the Cac 40 was up 0.56% at 4,302.24.
In Tokyo, the Nikkei closed up 1.23% at 14,502.35, while in Hong Kong the Hang Seng jumped 2% to 23,304.02.