European shares opened sharply higher Monday as investors reacted to news that US law enforcement officials will not pursue charges against Democratic Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton over her use of a private email server while Secretary of State.
Britain's FTSE 100 added around 92 points, or 1.4%, by late morning in London to be quoted at 6784 points. Similar percentage gains were seen in benchmarks in Germany (DAX +1.5% to 10,419) and France (CAC-40 +1.63% to 4453) as the approached mid-day.
U.S. futures prices were indicating firm advances in New York, as well, with the S&P 500 seen 28.5 points higher from its Friday close of 2,085.18. The Dow Jones Industrial Average is indicated 230.72 points higher and the tech-heavy Nasdaq 76.7 points higher.
U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation head James Comey said Sunday that his office found no new evidence in a troll of 650,000 emails linked to disgraced former lawmaker Anthony Weiner that would alter the FBI's view in July that she should not face prosecution. Weiner's estranged wife, Huma Abedin, is a close confidant and top aide to the Clinton campaign.
Comey had indicated in a letter to Congressional Republican lawmakers on October 28 that the new email find needed to be investigated as it could lead to a change in the Bureau's July conclusions.
HSBC plc (HSBC) shares were the top gainer in London, rising nearly 5% after Europe's biggest bank posted lower net profit but significantly improved its capital base and cost ratios.
The bank reported pre-tax profits on an adjusted basis of $5.6 billion for the quarter, according to the nine-month report, a 4.4% advance from the previous three month period. The bank's common tier one capital ratio, a measure of the amount of capital it has set aside to absorb future potential losses, rose to 13.9% from 12.1% in the previous quarter. HSBC said the hefty advance was linked to a change in regulatory treatment of its stake in Bank of Communications Co. (BoCom) in China.
HSBC shares were quoted 4.9% high at 11:15 GMT and changing hands at £623.3 each, extending the year-to-date gain past 20%. HSBC shares have also beaten the FTSE 350 banking index over the past three months, rising 15% against a 6.2% performance for the benchmark.
Away from equities, global crude prices surged more than 1% in overnight trading in Asia following comments from OPEC Secretary General Mohammed Barkindo that the oil producing cartel would stick to its plans to limit production when it meets later this month in Vienna.
Brent crude prices added 1.75% from Friday's close to change hands at $46.43 per barrel. Nymex light sweet crude prices also gained, rising 1.74% to $45.11.
The Mexican peso, a closely-watched indicator of the U.S. election campaign, rose nearly 2.2% following release of the Comey letter Sunday, suggesting traders were increasing bets that Clinton, who continues to hold marginal leads into the final hours of the gruelling contest, will push through to an electoral victory Tuesday of Republican rival Donald Trump.
The U.S. dollar was firmer in European trading, as well, rising 0.30% against a basket of global currencies to trade at 97.56. It's strength, however, helped push the pound more than 1% lower, to 1.2415 paring some of the gains the currency earned last week in the wake of a High Court ruling that demanded U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May seek Parliamentary approval before triggering the country's exit from the European Union.