European stocks closed higher on Tuesday as encouraging macro from the US and optimism about the end of the lockdown in Shanghai in China helped investors move to the counterattack after the heavy losses of the previous days.
The pan-European Stoxx 600 index rose 1.2% and closed at 438.97 points.
The index plunged to a two-month low last week as investors worried that US and European central banks were already launching or preparing to tighten their policies, which posed a risk to growth prospects. And this at the same time that the war in Ukraine and the constant lockdowns in China continue to create serious downward pressures on the world economy.
The Chinese authorities announced today that Shanghai had achieved three consecutive days without new cases of COVID-19 outside the quarantine zones, which could lead to the gradual lifting of restrictions in the city of 25 million people.
The data released to the US on retail and industrial production was also encouraging, alleviating concerns about the resilience of the US economy.
In the individual boards, the German DAX gained 1.6% to 14,185.94 points, the French CAC 40 strengthened by 1.3% to 6,430.19 points, while the British FTSE 100 rose 0.7% and closed at 7,518, 35 units.
In the region, the Italian FTSE MIB strengthened 1.1%, while the Spanish IBEX 35 gained 1.5%.
At the macro level of the day, the Eurozone economy grew in the first quarter, albeit small, despite the spread of Omicron and the Russian invasion of Ukraine, which negatively affected economic performance.
In particular, in the eurozone, GDP grew by 0.3% in the quarter, according to Eurostat, while on an annual basis the economy “ran” at a rate of 5.1%, with estimates for 5% growth.
In the UK, unemployment fell to its lowest level since 1974 in the first quarter of the year, but rising inflation led to the biggest drop in real wages (excluding bonuses) since 2013, according to official figures. In particular, unemployment fell to 3.7% from 3.8%, lower than estimates for a fixed percentage, and 1.257 million people out of work were less than the 1.295 million vacancies, for the first time in history.