Investing.com - Asian shares gained Monday on prospects for a wider deal to ease crippling economic sanctions on Iran that pushed oil prices down, a positive for Asian economies heavily dependent on crude and natural gas imports.
The Nikkei ended the morning session up 1.31% on the Iran deal and a weaker yen, while the Shanghai Composite inched up 0.32%.
U.S. stocks extended Thursday's gains into Friday after investors welcomed strong weekly jobless claims data, which continued to build sentiment the U.S. economy is improving.
But the Federal Reserve's USD85 billion in monthly bond purchases are not expected to be eased next month, making the overall mix of growth and easy money attractive for buying stocks.
At the close of U.S. trading, the Dow Jones Industrial Average finished up 0.34%, the S&P 500 index rose 0.50%, while the Nasdaq Composite index rose 0.57%.
European indices finished largely higher last week.
After the close of European trade, the EURO STOXX 50 rose 0.35%, France's CAC 40 rose 0.58%, while Germany's DAX 30 rose 0.25%. Meanwhile, in the U.K. the FTSE 100 finished down 0.11%.
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