European stocks posted solid early gains Friday as global markets reacted to the Senate passage of a budget blueprint that could lead to $1.5 trillion in tax cuts and regional corporate earnings revealed a bullish outlook for the final months of the year.
The Stoxx Europe 600 Index, the region's broadest measure of share prices, was marked 0.2% higher over the opening hour of trading to trim its one-week decline to around 0.355%. Germany's DAX performance index was the session's biggest gainer, rising 51 points, or 0.4%, on the strength of industrial stocks such as Deutsche Lufthansa and Siemens AG.
Volvo AB (VOLVY) shares were the top gainer in early trading after the truckmaker posted stronger-than-expected third quarter profits and issued a robust outlook for the rest of the year
Volvo said earnings for the three months ending in September came in at SEK7.02 billion ($861 million) on sales of SEK77,225 billion, a 12% increase from the same period last year. The company's order book swelled by 32%, the company said, over the third quarter.
Volvo shares were marked 7% higher in the opening hour of trading in Stockholm and changing hands SEK166.20 and extending its year-to-date gains past 55%.
Britain's FTSE 100 around 18 points, or 0.23%, at the opening bell, with gains supported by a weaker pound, which slipped 0.22% against the U.S. dollar after Bank of England rate-setter told BBC radio that "we are not seeing pay pressure and for me we are not seeing sustained signs of domestic inflation pressure", suggesting next month's rate hike could be subject to more intense debate.
Broader market support, however, came from the United States late last night, where Senate lawmakers voted largely on party lines last night to approve a 2018 budget blueprint that not only paves the way for tax cuts, but also potentially allows for tax legislation to be passed by a simple Senate majority, giving Republican lawmakers a better chance to enact change without the help of their Democratic rivals.
Overnight in Asia, stocks rounded out a solid week with a bit of profit-taking, owing in part to the stronger dollar, which rose 0.27% on an index basis to 93.52.
The MSCI Asia ex-Japan index, the broadest measure of regional share prices, was marked 0.15% lower into the start of the European trading session while the Nikkei 225 in Tokyo scraped 9.12 points, or 0.04% higher to close at 21,457.64 points, extending the benchmark's win steak to 14 consecutive sessions, the longest since 1961.
U.S. equity futures are bullish, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average priced to rise 80 points, or 0.35%, at the opening bell while the S&P 500 gains around 0.24%, pushing the benchmark into record territory once again after a torrid week for global equities.
Dow components General Electric Co. (GE) - Get General Electric Company Report and Proctor & Gamble (PG) - Get Procter & Gamble Company Report will report third quarter earnings today and we'll also get updates from Honeywell (HON) - Get Honeywell International Inc. Report , Schlumberger (SLB) - Get Schlumberger NV Report and Baker Hughes. (BHI)
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