European stocks rally on ECB, BoE stimulus pledges
LONDON, July 4 (Reuters) - European stocks posted their biggest one-day jump in 10 weeks on Thursday after central banks in Britain and the euro zone signalled that, unlike the United States, they are in no hurry to unwind stimulus.
The Bank of England, under new governor Mark Carney, surprised markets by issuing a statement after an unchanged rate decision and said investors had been too quick to price in future rises in interest rates.
Less than two hours later, the European Central Bank went a step further, with President Mario Draghi saying that its rates will not only remain low but may even be lowered further, while the exit from stimulus is very distant.
The comments offered reassurance to equity markets spooked in recent weeks by signs that the U.S. Federal Reserve for its part is moving closer to scaling back stimulus.
"That's clearly another tick in the box in favor of European equities relative to U.S. equities," said Patrick Mooney, senior equities strategist at ING Investment Management.
"We closed the underweight (on European equities) a couple of days ago and the next step is to go overweight Europe versus the U.S., based on valuation, based on relative economic indicators and based on relative monetary policy."
The FTSEurofirst 300 provisionally closed 2.4 percent higher at 1,178.42 points - its biggest rise since April.