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European Markets Close Higher

European markets ended higher on Friday with investors picking up stocks, betting on hopes global central banks will step up stimulus to boost sagging economies.

Some short-covering after previous session's losses helped as well in driving the market up in positive territory.

The pan Eurpean Stoxx 600 ended up 1.24%. Among the major markets, the U.K., Germany and France, all ended notably higher, with their respective benchmarks FTSE 100, DAX and CAC 40 rising 0.71%, 1.31% and 1.22%. Switzerland's SMI ended up 1.27%.

A technical glitch delayed the opening of the London market by almost two hours this morning.

Among other markets in Europe, Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, Ireland, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Spain and Sweden ended with strong gains, while Turkey, Ukraine, Poland, Russia, Greece and Iceland closed weak.

Strong earnings and revenues reported by Nvidia triggered hectic buying in the technology space and drove up prices of key firms in the sector.

In the British market, ITV, J Sainsbury, St. James Place, Smurfit Kappa, RBS, Phoenix, Ashtead Group, Morrison Supermarkets, NMC Health, Hargreaves Lansdown, Lloyds Banking, Schroders and British Land Company gained 2 to 3.4%. Barclays, Associated British Foods, Rentokil, Micro Focus and Just Eat also ended notably higher.

In Germany, Deutsche Bank climbed up 4.7%. Wirecard ended higher by about 3%. Bayer, Henkel, Infineon, Continental and Lufthansa moved up 2 to 2.7%.

In the French market, Technip, Societe Generale and Credit Agricole gained 3 to 3.4%. ArcelorMittal advanced nearly 3%.

BNP Paribas, Thales, Vinci, Publicis Groupe, Dassault Systemes, STMicroElectronics, Danone, Vivendi, Vinci and Capgemini gained 1.5 to 2.5%.

Daimler, Merck, Deutsche TeleKom, SAP, HeidelbergCement, BMW, Volkswagen, Vonovia, Deutsche Post and Thyssenkrupp gained 1 to 2%.

Dovish remarks by ECB's Rehn that signaled more monetary easing by the bank sent the euro down into the red.

China's state planner said it would roll out a plan to boost disposable income this year and in 2020.

With global growth slowing down amid simmering U.S.-China trade war, markets expect aggressive stimulus from all the major central banks.

Data from Eurostat showed the euro area trade surplus declined in June as exports logged a monthly decline amid an increase in imports.

The trade surplus fell to a seasonally adjusted EUR 17.9 billion in June from EUR 19.6 billion in May. In the same period last year, the surplus totaled EUR 12.5 billion.

On a monthly basis, exports decreased 0.6 percent on month, while imports grew 0.3 percent.

Data showed that the surplus totaled EUR 20.6 billion on an unadjusted basis compared to a EUR 22.6 billion surplus in June 2018. Both exports and imports decreased 4.7% and 4.1%, respectively.

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