European markets soar on U.S. payrolls, Chinese exports data
Italian stocks gain despite Fitch ratings cut08 March, 19:38
US payroll data was more positive than economists had forecast in February. An additional 236,000 employees found work last month, according to a Labor Department report. The figures brought the jobless rate in the world's largest economy to the lowest level in some five years. Chinese exports, meanwhile, jumped 21.8% in February from the year-earlier month.
Italy's FTSE-Mib index advanced 1.5% to 16,186 points. The yield spread between 10-year Italian bonds and the German benchmark bund, a barometer of Italy's borrowing costs in the eurozone crisis, closed at 307 points with 10-year yields at 4.6%, despite bad news from Fitch.
The ratings agency said Friday that it had cut Italy's credit rating from A- to BBB+, with a negative outlook. The downgrade was due to the "inconclusive result" of Italy's general election. Fitch said last week that the prospect of a prolonged period of political instability in Italy after the election failed to produce a clear winner had put the nation's credit rating under pressure. Italy's recession is one of the deepest in Europe and indicators suggest it will last longer than expected, endangering the efforts the country has made to put its public accounts in order, according to the ratings agency.
The Frankfurt Dax bourse advanced 0.6% to 7,986, while the Paris Cac 40 Index climbed 1.2% to 3,840 points. Madrid's Ibex index increased 2.9% to 8,628 points. London's Ftse-100 stock market rose 0.6% to 6,483 points.