The French market is modestly higher on Friday, in the absence of any important economic news. That said, some broker recommendations did impact investor sentiment elsewhere in the region. The Asian markets ended mostly lower on profit taking and the U.S. index futures are higher ahead of the key U.S. consumer price data.
The International Monetary Fund approved a 28 billion euros loan for Greece despite doubts raised by some members about the ability of the eurozone nation to implement a four-year program that includes stringent austerity measures.
The Euro Stoxx 50 index of eurozone bluechip stocks is adding 0.29 percent, while the Stoxx Europe 50 index, which includes some major U.K. companies, is advancing 0.38 percent.
The CAC 40 index is currently gaining 0.22 percent.
Peugeot is climbing 2.1 percent while Renault is losing 0.2 percent.
Axa and Veolia Environnement are advancing 1.9 percent and 1.3 percent, respectively.
BNP paribas is climbing 1.3 percent. Societe Generale is gaining 0.8 pecrent.
Credit Agricole said its first-quarter results would benefit from a gain that would more than compensate for its Greece-related provisions. The stock is up 0.6 percent.
STMicroelectronics and Alstom are losing about 2 pecrent and 1 percent, respectively.
Elsewhere in Europe, the German DAX is adding 0.26 pecrent and the UK's FTSE 100 gaining 0.34 percent. Switzerland's SMI is rising 0.03 percent.
In economic news, Eurozone's merchandise trade balance slipped to a deficit in January, and exceeded economists' forecast, data released by statistical office Eurostat showed.
Across Asia/Pacific, Australia's All Ordinaries lost 0.05 percent and Hong Kong's Hang Seng fell 0.17 percent. Japan's Nikkei 225 index edged down 0.06 percent while China's Shanghai Composite Index climbed 1.30 percent.
In the U.S., futures point to a higher open on Wall Street. In the previous session, the major averages closed firmly in positive territory, benefiting from another batch of positive U.S. economic data, including more upbeat jobs data. The Dow rose 0.4 percent, the Nasdaq climbed 0.5 percent and the S&P 500 advanced 0.6 percent.
In the commodity space, crude for April delivery is adding $0.40 to $105.51 per barrel while gold is dropping $9.9 to $1649.6 a troy ounce.
by RTT Staff Writer
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