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Europe Stocks to Open Higher on G7 Intervention

Reuters and CNBC.com
Friday, 18 Mar 2011 | 1:52 AM ET

European stocks are likely to open higher on Friday, as Group of Seven countries agree to joint intervention to stem the yen's gains.

According to BGC Partners, the UK's FTSE 100 index will open 15 points higher at 5,711, while Germany's DAX index could rise 58 points to 6,715, and France's CAC index may increase 20 points to start the day at 3,816.

Martin Barraud | OJO Images | Getty Images

Asian shares rebounded, with Japanese indexes up around 2 percent on the move.

The dollar spiked almost 3 percent to a high of 81.49 after the announcement of joint intervention.

Financial leaders of the world's richest countries held talks on late on Thursday on ways to calm global markets roiled by Japan's nuclear crisis and concerned it will unravel the world economy's fragile recovery.

The yen has hit fresh record highs against the dollar. Japan's finance minister Yoshihiko Noda has blamed speculation for the yen spike and said he was closely watching markets, a warning that the Bank of Japan may soon be given the signal to buy dollars.

Oil prices were on the rise, with Brent crude jumping above $116 a barrel on fears of rising geopolitical tensions in the Middle East and North Africa, after the UN approve military action to curb Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi.

European stocks bounced from three-month lows on Thursday, with the FTSEurofirst 300 index of top European shares closing 1.8 percent higher at 1,086.20 points.

Spain easily sold 4.1 billion euros in long-term bonds Thursday, reflecting some return in market confidence, though borrowing costs remained high.

Investors will keep a close eye on bank stocks Friday when the European Banking Authority (EBA) publishes stress test scenarios and details of the banks involved with the EU-wide exercise.

The EBA is aiming to restore confidence in Europe's banks after last year's health check was widely criticized for lack of transparency and credibility.

Germany releases it producer price index for February Friday, while euro zone foreign trade for January is also due.

Contact Europe: Economy

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