LONDON ( The Deal) -- European markets were mixed Monday, despite a brief rally following a better-than-expected November business confidence report from Germany's respected IFO institute.
The index, based on a survey of 7,000 companies, rose for the first time in seven months, reaching 104.7 points, up from 103.2 in October. Analysts said Germany's confidence wobble may have stabilized for now.
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In London, the FTSE 100 was hovering around the level of Friday's close at 6,750, while in Paris the CAC 40 was up 1.06% at 4,393. Germany's DAX index was up 0.74% at 9,804.
The rally followed further gains in Asia, after Friday's move by the Chinese central bank to lower interest rates. Hong Kong closed up 1.95% at 23,893.14 and the Shanghai Composite Index rose 1.89% to close at 2,533.89. The Tokyo Market was closed for a holiday.
In London, the biggest riser was insurer FriendsLife Group, as the market got its first chance to respond to Friday evening's news of a preliminary agreement to be acquired by larger rival Aviva (AV) . Friends was up 5.29% to 366.10 pence, while Aviva was down just as sharply, falling 4.55% to 514 pence. Some analysts failed to see any advantage to Aviva from the acquisition.
Meanwhile, Dutch insurer Aegon (AEG) rose 1.46% to €6.24 after announcing the sale of a 35% stake in French joint venture La Mondiale Particpations to its partner, French insurer La Mondiale for 350 million euros ($434 million).