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Europe: Stock markets advance at open

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Europe's major stock markets opened higher on Friday after gains across Asia and on Wall Street thanks to growing hints that US interest rates will not rise until next year.

[LONDON] Europe's major stock markets opened higher on Friday after gains across Asia and on Wall Street thanks to growing hints that US interest rates will not rise until next year.

In opening stock market trading on Friday, London's benchmark FTSE 100 index climbed 0.81 per cent to 6,426.46 points.

In the eurozone, Frankfurt's DAX 30 rallied 1.0 per cent compared with Thursday's close to 10,100.78 points and the Paris CAC 40 jumped also by 1.0 percent to 4,723.28.

"The positive opening ... comes thanks to another positive US close which spilled over into Asia, extending recent gains as investors add to risky bets on expectations of prolonged easy monetary policy," said Mike van Dulken, head of research at trading group Accendo Markets.

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Fed policymakers at their September meeting mulled an increase in the zero-level US federal funds rate but took a cautious approach after a severe bout of financial turmoil unsettled the outlook for the world's biggest economy, the minutes showed.

Also on Thursday, the Bank of England revealed that it would keep its main interest rate at the record-low 0.5 percent, where it has stood for six-and-a-half years to support growth.

And in minutes of its last meeting, the European Central Bank reiterated its commitment to its bond-buying stimulus programme, while adding that more time was needed to assess the impact of a slowdown in China and other emerging markets.

"Rate-setters from the UK to Europe to the US have voiced concerns over the slowdown in emerging markets and the drop in commodity prices," Jasper Lawler, analyst at CMC Markets UK, wrote in a client note Friday.

Mining and commodities giant Glencore, weighed down by debt as it struggles against a commodity price crash, announced Friday it is slashing its worldwide output of zinc by one third.

The Swiss-based company, which employs around 181,000 people worldwide, hinted at job cuts as a result of the cut to production.

Glencore shares were the top riser on London's FTSE, winning 6.0 percent to 127.90 pence.

AFP

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