Europe close: Investor sentiment buoyed by record highs on Wall Street
Stocks on the Continent extended their recent gains, taking their cue from another session of record highs on Wall Street.
Stoking risk appetite was data showing a much bigger than expected rise in US housing starts, which added to expectations for a big rebound in activity in 2021.
"The reopening trade is still running strong now that the US has administered over 200 million COVID vaccines. The breakdown of the correlation of better data and higher yields is also providing added fuel for stocks" said Edward Moya, senior market analyst at Oanda.
The benchmark pan-European Stoxx 600 rose 0.90% to 442.49, alongside a 1.34% advance for Germany's Dax to 15,459.75 while the FTSE Mibtel was up 0.88% to 24,744.38.
Not surprisingly, cyclical names did best, with the Stoxx 600s gauge for Autos and Parts companies up by 2.11% and that for Banks 1.64% higher.
The sector index for Basic Resources meanwhile added 1.10%, despite a slate of modestly weaker-than-expected activity data out of China for last month.
Nonetheless, analysts at Pantheon Macroeconomics said that Chinese economic growth should remain "elevated" in 2021, despite the "blemish" from soft fixed asset investment in March.
In Europe, German Chancellor, Angela Merkel, was reportedly pushing for greater powers from lawmakers that would allow her to impose coronavirus lockdowns and curfews where needed in her country.