As commodities climbed, European stock markets began to rise in June

European stock markets began to rise strongly in June, pushing a key regional barometer to new highs as commodity prices rose in hopes that the global economic recovery will continue to accelerate.

The Stoxx Europe 600 Index rose 1% in early trading, setting a record high. As the global oil benchmark Brent crude oil price reached its highest level since March, shares of mining and energy companies led gains in Europe on Tuesday.

However, Tuesday’s gains were broad, and other economically sensitive sectors such as automakers, industry and banks also rose.

Driven by investor confidence in accelerating vaccine launches and economic reopening, Germany’s Dax index rose 1.2%, while France’s Cac 40 index rose 0.8%. The London FTSE 100 Index has a relatively high weight for commodity companies, rising 1.3%.

Brent crude, the global oil benchmark, rose more than 2% on Tuesday to $70.69 per barrel. US benchmark West Texas Intermediate crude oil rose 2.7% to US$68 per barrel, reaching its highest level since 2018.

The survey of Chinese factory executives in the world’s largest emerging market released on Tuesday is the latest sign of the acceleration of the global economic recovery.

The Caixin Manufacturing Purchasing Managers Index hit a five-month high, showing that overall growth has accelerated. It also shows that with the increase in the prices of many raw materials, manufacturers are under increasing cost pressures.

Another sign of rising inflation in the global economy is that consumer prices in the Eurozone rose by 2% in May from the same month in 2020, compared with 1.6% in April. Energy prices led the rise, with an annual increase of 13.1%.

The interim inflation data was released before the European Central Bank’s meeting on June 10, at which time the European Central Bank will decide whether to change its current monthly asset purchase rate of 80 billion euros.

The central bank’s goal is an inflation rate close to but below 2%. Several policymakers recently stated that they expect the recent increase in CPI to be temporary, partly due to the extremely low rise during the coronavirus crisis.

Tavistock Wealth Chief Investment Officer John Leiper said that the inflation data reflects a strong rebound in economic activity in the euro zone.

“I expect the recovery to continue into the second half of 2021, as the government has relaxed restrictions on economic activity and investors have become more optimistic about the region’s prospects,” he said.

In the United States, after the Memorial Day long weekend, the stock market opened higher. Standard & Poor’s 500 index futures rose 0.4%, while the technology-focused Nasdaq 100 index rose 0.4%.

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