The Star Early Edition - - MARKETS -

LENDERS pushed stocks to a two-month high yes­ter­day, even as they pared gains in the fi­nal hour of trad­ing amid a de­cline in min­ers and oil and gas com­pa­nies.

The Stoxx Europe 600 in­dex added 0.1 per­cent to 345.72 at the close of trad­ing in London, after ear­lier jumping as much as 0.5 per­cent. The bench­mark in­dex gained 2.9 per­cent last week as Mario Draghi, the pres­i­dent of the Euro­pean Cen­tral Bank, said the cen­tral bank needed to ac­cel­er­ate in­fla­tion and might broaden its as­set­pur­chase pro­gramme, while China cut key in­ter­est rates for the first time since 2012.

Fu­tures on the Euro Stoxx 50 in­dex rose 0.5 per­cent at 5.04pm in London.

“The sta­tus quo is to invest with the belief that stim­u­lus will con­tinue to be sup­port­ive to eq­uity prices,” Daniel We­ston, a port­fo­lio man­ager at Aimed Cap­i­tal, said.

“All cor­ners of the world are stim­u­lat­ing. In­vestors are be­ing forced to con­sider sep­a­rat­ing weak fun­da­men­tals with bullish stim­u­lus.” – Bloomberg

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