London: European stock exchanges posted sharp gains Wednesdsay, powered by positive US economic and corporate news and despite record surges in the euro and the price of oil.
The London FTSE 100 index rose 2.36% to finish at 6,046, while in Paris the CAC 40 added 1.56% to reach 4,855 levels. The Frankfurt Dax gained 1.79% to finish at 6,702.
The Euro Stoxx 50 index of leading eurozone shares took on 1.57% to end the day at 3,748 mark.
US stocks surged higher after the release of consumer price data that came in as expected, which helped ease inflation concerns and offset a larger-than-anticipated decline in housing starts.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average by mid-day was up 1.61% at 12,562.03 while the tech-rich Nasdaq composite had climbed 2.14% to 2,234.91.
The US Labor Department report that consumer prices rose a modest 0.3% in March, in line with market expectations, stoked the rally as investors saw it signalling that the Federal Reserve would have more leeway to lower interest rates at its April 29-30 meeting.
“This report gives the Fed some cover to lower rates further, which is expected,” said Joel Naroff, president of Naroff Economic Advisors.
Separately, the Commerce Department said US housing starts in March plummeted 11.9% to a 947,000 unit annual rate, the lowest level seen since March 1991, and below economist forecasts of a 1.018 million unit annual rate.
Elsewhere, there were gains of 1.71% to 13,637 on the Ibex-35 in Madrid, 1.95% to 3,863 on the Bel-20 in Brussels, 2.19% to 453.22 on the AEX in Amsterdam and 0.88% to 7,250.7 on the Swiss Market Index.