European stocks opened firmly higher Monday as investors draw optimism from some blockbuster merger deals last week and build gains in regional equities that could take markets back to multi-year highs.

Britain's FTSE 100 benchmark gained at the opening bell, according to financial bookmakers IG, helped by a modestly weaker pound, which slipped to 1.2769 against the U.S. dollar as the U.K. begins Brexit negotiations with the European Union with a weakened government and a slowing economy.

Friday's massive takeover deal between Amazon  (AMZN) and upscale food retailer Whole Foods Market Inc (WFM) , valued at just under $14 billion, had a mixed impact on U.S. markets, but could be a precursor to sector consolidation and further deal-making.

This article was written by a staff member of TheStreet.

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