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Europe: Stock markets ahead at open

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[LONDON] Europe's main stock markets rebounded slightly in opening deals on Thursday, but investors remain on alert over any developments in a brewing global trade war.

British investors meanwhile awaited an interest rate decision from the Bank of England.

London's benchmark FTSE 100 index of major blue-chip firms rose 0.4 per cent to 7,658.07 points compared with Wednesday's close.

In the eurozone, Frankfurt's DAX 30 was only marginally higher at 12,699.71, and the Paris CAC 40 gained 0.3 per cent to 5,386.88 points.

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Elsewhere, Asian markets also edged tentatively higher as a sense of stability returned after the turmoil earlier in the week.

However, dealers remain particularly anxious over the ongoing China-US trade spat.

"The modest rebound seen in equity markets .. should not be taken as a sign that investors are getting used to the idea of a trade war," said CMC Markets analyst Michael Hewson.

"They are probably just an indication that escalation risks still remain some way away despite the recent rhetoric between the US and China.

"The EU announced its retaliation measures to President Trump's tariffs earlier this month, which will start this Friday, and could well prompt a counter response from the US in the coming days or weeks."

Back in London on Thursday, the Bank of England is due at 1100 GMT to announce the outcome of its latest monetary policy gathering.

Economists expect the British central bank to leave its key interest rate at 0.50 per cent.

AFP