Investing.com - European stocks remained mostly higher in light trade on Monday, with no major economic reports ahead and as last week's announcement by the European Central Bank of a fresh round of stimulus measures continued to support equity markets.
During European afternoon trade, the DJ Euro Stoxx 50 added 0.09%, France's CAC 40 inched 0.04% lower, while Germany's DAX edged up 0.09%.
European equities found support after the ECB last Thursday cut the main refinancing rate in the euro area to a record low 0.15% and imposed negative deposit rates on commercial lenders, in a bid to stimulate lending to businesses.
The bank also implemented a new Long-Term Refinancing Operation, designed to help banks lend to small companies and said it would "intensify" its preparatory work on the 'asset-backed security' market.
The ECB acted after a report on Wednesday showed that the annual rate of inflation in the euro zone slowed to 0.5% in May, well below the bank's target of close to but just under 2%.
Financial stocks remained broadly higher, as French lenders Societe Generale (PARIS:SOGN) and BNP Paribas (PARIS:BNPP) gained 0.47% and 0.50%, while Germany's Commerzbank (XETRA:CBKG) advanced 0.73%.
Among peripheral lenders, Italy's Unicredit (MILAN:CRDI) and Intesa Sanpaolo (MILAN:ISP) climbed 0.41% and 0.80% respectively. Spanish banks Banco Santander (MADRID:SAN) and BBVA (MADRID:BBVA) turned lower however, slipping 0.01% and 0.45%.
Elsewhere, Deutsche Telekom (XETRA:DTEGn) gained 0.48% after saying it may increase disclosure on government wiretapping after Vodafone (LONDON:VOD) last week released its law-enforcement transparency report. Deutsche Telekom has 145 million wireless customers in Europe and the U.S.
In London, FTSE 100 rose 0.23%, still supported by gains in the financial sector.
Shares in HSBC Holdings (LONDON:HSBA) climbed 0.45% and Barclays (LONDON:BARC) jumped 0.90%, while the Royal Bank of Scotland (LONDON:RBS) rallied 1.06%. Lloyds Banking (LONDON:LLOY) continued to underperformed on the other hand, tumbling 1.46%.
Mining stocks were also on the upside, as Glencore Xstrata (LONDON:GLEN) advanced 0.66% and Vedanta Resources (LONDON:VED) climbed 0.77%, while rivals Bhp Billiton (LONDON:BLT) and Fresnillo (LONDON:FRES) gained 0.69% and 0.90% respectively.
Vodafone added to gains, up 0.52%, in the wake of its law-enforcement transparency report published last week in which it says 29 governments from Albania to the U.K. asked for access to its network or user data.
Meanwhile, Centrica (LONDON:CNA) declined 0.51% amid reports the energy provider is in talks with Qatar for cooperation in some U.K. projects.
In the U.S., equity markets pointed to a steady open. The Dow 30futures pointed to a 0.06% dip, S&P 500futures signaled a 0.08% loss, while the Nasdaq 100futures indicated a 0.05% downtick.
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