Investing.com - European stocks held gains on Monday, as positive Chinese economic growth data supported market sentiment, although uncertainty over the future of the Federal Reserve's bond-buying program continued to weigh.
During European morning trade, the EURO STOXX 50 edged up 0.17%, France's CAC 40 gained 0.34%, while Germany's DAX 30 added 0.11%.
Official data showed that Chinese gross domestic product expanded 7.5% in the second quarter from a year earlier, following growth of 7.7% in the three months to March and in line with expectations.
Investors remained cautious amid expectations that the Fed will start to unwind its USD85 billion-a-month bond buying program later this year, while other world central banks will continue to maintain loose monetary policy for the foreseeable future.
Global stocks rallied last week after Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke said the U.S. economy still needed monetary stimulus.
Financial stocks remained broadly higher, as French lenders Societe Generale and BNP Paribas jumped 1.15% and 1.27%, while Germany's Deutsche Bank and Commerzbank rallied 1.05% and 3.72%
Focus magazine reported earlier that German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble talked to UBS Chairman Axel Weber to evaluate the Swiss bank's interest in buying the state's shares in Commerzbank.
Among peripheral lenders, with Italian banks Intesa Sanpaolo and Unicredit added 0.08% and 0.11% respectively, while Spain's BBVA and Banco Santander lost 0.16% and 3%.
Elsewhere, sea-freight forwarder Kuehne & Nagel surged 3.54% after saying profit increased 6.3% to CHF153 million, meeting the average market estimate.
In London, FTSE 100 rose 0.37%, as U.K. lenders tracked their European counterparts higher.
Shares in HSBC Holdings advanced 0.43% and Barclays jumped 1.41%, while the Royal Bank of Scotland and Lloyds Banking surged 3.42% and 3.73%.
Meanwhile, mining stocks were mixed, as BHP Billiton gained 0.40% and Anglo American jumped 0.91% respectively, while Rio Tinto and Vedanta Resources declined 0.56% and 1.74%.
In the U.S., equity markets pointed to a higher open. The Dow Jones Industrial Average futures pointed to a 0.16% rise, S&P 500 futures signaled a 0.16% gain, while the Nasdaq 100 futures indicated a 0.22% increase.
Later in the day, the U.S. was to produce official data on producer price inflation and preliminary data from the University of Michigan on consumer sentiment.
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