European shares close higher on expectations in vaccines and rescue fund

By Sruthi Shankar and Shreyashi Sanyal

Jul 20 (.) – European stocks rose on Monday, helped by encouraging results from vaccine candidates to curb the coronavirus pandemic and after European Union leaders advanced a framework agreement on a recovery fund to stimulate their economies.

* The Eurozone Favorite Stock Index increased 0.9%, reversing the losses seen during the opening; while the euro jumped to four-month highs against the dollar.

* An experimental COVID-19 vaccine developed by British pharmacist AstraZeneca and the University of Oxford is safe and produced immune responses in the first human clinical trials.

* Meanwhile, the US pharmaceutical company Pfizer and the German company BioNTech also offered promising preliminary data in a study.

* The European Reference Index STOXX 600 also reversed trend and closed with an advance of 0.8%, after the German Chancellor Angela Merkel said that the EU leaders now have a new framework to work in the fund of recovery of the euro area for 750,000 million euros.

* Europe’s health segment stocks performed best in the region, gaining 1.2% on signs that leaders of northern EU nations are ready to commit to the economic recovery plan, while Negotiations in Brussels started their fourth day.

* Among other notable operations, the Swiss asset gesture Julius Baer Gruppe AG suffered a 3% drop in its shares, after reporting a 6% drop in its asset portfolio in the last six months to June.

(Report by Sruthi Shankar, Sagarika Jaisinghani and Shreyashi Sanyal in Bengaluru. Edited in Spanish by Marion Giraldo)