Europe stocks higher on US-China trade optimism; UK set for another Brexit vote

Finance

European shares are set to start Friday’s session in positive territory, with investors hopeful of progress in U.S.China trade talks.

Britain’s FTSE 100 is seen 30 points higher at 7,263, Germany’s DAX 41 points higher at 11,472 and France’s CAC up 28 points to 5,323, according to IG index data.

Market players turned their focus to trade negotiations between Washington and Beijing on Friday, after fears of a potential U.S. recession put global equities under pressure earlier in the week.

As the U.S. and China restart trade talks, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang pledged Thursday to further open up market access to foreign lenders and insurance firms. And on Friday, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said he had a “productive working dinner” with officials the previous night.

Elsewhere, Brexit remains a source of worry, as a parliamentary deadlock over U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May’s withdrawal deal rumbled on. May is set to put her divorce deal to a vote yet again on Friday — it’s already been rejected twice by British lawmakers.

On the corporate front, H&M is due to report earnings, while Telecom Italia will hold its annual general meeting.

In terms of data, German unemployment and retail sales and U.K. house prices and GDP figures are due to be released Friday.

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