European Markets Close Higher On Bargain Hunting

European markets closed higher on Friday, rebounding from recent losses, as investors picked up stocks despite lingering concerns about interest rate hikes, and a surge in Covid-19 cases in China.

The markets also digested European Central Bank President Christine Lagarde's speech at a conference, where she said the bank will keep raising rates as withdrawing accommodation may not be enough to curb inflation.

The pan European Stoxx 600 climbed 1.16%. The U.K.'s FTSE 100 gained 0.53%, Germany's DAX climbed 1.16% and France's CAC 40 surged 1.04%, while Switzerland's SMI advanced 1.17%.

Among other markets in Europea, Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, Greece, Iceland, Ireland, Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Sweden and Turkiye closed higher.

Norway and Russia ended weak, while Poland settled flat.

Bank stocks moved mostly higher as the European Central Bank begins the biggest withdrawal of cash from the euro zone's banking system in its history.

In the UK market, Frasers Group rallied nearly 6%. Convatec Group, JD Sports Fashion, Harbour Energy, Next, Kingfisher, Phoenix Group Holdings, United Utilities, ICP, Flutter Entertainment, Ashtead Group and B&M European Value Retail gained 3 to 4.5%.

Legal & General shares gained more than 3% after the company backed its FY22 operating profit view.

Prudential, Smiths Group, Rolls-Royce Holdings and Glencore shed 1 to 2%.

In Paris, Teleperformance climbed nearly 4% after the company said it will exit what it calls the "highly egregious" part of its social media content-moderation business.

Schneider Electrics gained 3.3%, while Essilor, Saint Gobain, Kering, WorldLine, Safran, Sanofi, AXA, Veolia, Legrand, Bouygues and Airbus Group gained 1.5 to 2.5%.

Unibail Rodamco drifted down by about 1.4% after Goldman Sachs lowered the stock's rating from 'neutral' to 'sell.'

In Germany, MTU Aero Engines, Fresenius, Fresenius Medical Care, Daimler, Siemens, HeidelbergCement, Bayer, Continental, E.ON, Covestro, Volkswagen and BMW gained 2 to 3%.

Zalando declined more than 3% and SAP ended lower by about 2.5%.

In economic news, U.K. retail sales volumes advanced 0.6 percent on a monthly basis in October, faster than the expected growth of 0.3%, data from the Office for National Statistic showed.

The monthly growth reversed the revised 1.5% decrease in September, which was affected by the bank holiday for the State Funeral.

Year-on-year, the decline in retail sales slowed to 6.1% from 6.8% in September.

Separately, survey results from market research group Gfk revealed that consumer confidence improved in November for the second straight month.

Switzerland's industrial production expanded at a slightly faster pace in the third quarter, while construction output decreased, the Federal Statistical Office reported on Friday.

Industrial production advanced 5.2% yearly in the September quarter, following a revised 5% rise in the June quarter.

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