European stock markets leapt higher on Wednesday owing to strong economic growth data from China and an improved picture in Portugal, dealers said.
London's FTSE 100 rallied 1.11 percent to 6,784.67 points as Britain's unemployment rate hit 6.5 percent in the three months to May -- the lowest point since late 2008.
Frankfurt's benchmark DAX 30 index won 1.44 percent to 9,859.27 points meanwhile, and the Paris CAC 40 jumped 1.48 percent to 4,369.06.
Milan's stock index surged 3.17 percent, Madrid's rose by 1.84 percent, and Lisbon's jumped 3.07 percent.
Markets were also lifted by upbeat comments on Tuesday by US Federal Reserve chairwoman Janet Yellen suggesting that the US jobs market might continue to pick up.
On top of that, official Chinese data showed that the world's second-biggest economy had expanded by more than expected in the second quarter of this year.
US stocks were higher in New York too, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average up by 0.35 percent at 17,120.86 points in midday trading.
The broad-based S&P 500 had added 0.36 percent to 1,980.35, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index gained 0.35 percent to 4,4431.68.
- Chinese economy picks up -
Markets worldwide perked up when China's National Bureau of Statistics said the economy grew by 7.5 percent in April-June thanks to government stimulus measures.
That figure beat the 7.4 percent expansion in the previous three months and exceeded a median forecast of 7.4 percent from a survey of 17 economists by AFP.
Mining stocks were among those boosted because China is a big consumer of metals.
In London, Rio Tinto shares gained 2.77 percent to 3,334.50 pence and Anglo American won 3.30 percent to 1,564 pence.
"More good news from China has engendered a strong bounce with miners leading the way," noted IG analyst Brenda Kelly.
Shares in Germany heavy industry giant ThyssenKrupp gained 1.50 percent to 22.37 euros in Frankfurt.
And in Paris, the French power-to-rail group Alstom was helped by a broker upgrade from Exane BNP Paribas as well.
Alstom's share price rallied 2.20 percent to 27.15 euros.
- Banco Espirito Santo rallies -
In Lisbon, shares in crisis-hit Banco Espirito Santo, which had shed another 14.61 percent on Tuesday to a record low of 0.38 euros, rallied with a gain of 19.74 percent to 0.45 euros at the close.
"Statements that shareholders in Banco Espirito Santo are willing to inject more capital after a second affiliate failed to repay short-term debt" underpinned the stock, according to Daniel Sugarman at ETX Capital.
Meanwhile Portugal Telecom threatened legal action against a holding company in the bank for a debt of 847 million euros ($1.15 billion) which was unpaid by a deadline on Tuesday.
The holding company Rioforte is expected to seek protection from creditors.
Shares in Portugal Telecom, which had fallen by 36.7 percent since the end of June, gained 3.28 percent to 1.89 euros after it agreed to new, less favourable terms on a tie-up with Brazilian group Oi in view of the unpaid debt.
On the foreign exchange market, the European single currency dipped to a one-month low at $1.3529, from $1.3570 late Tuesday in New York.
The British pound eased to $1.7130 from $1.7142 on Tuesday. The euro slipped to 78.97 pence from 79.15 pence.
In commodity trades, gold declined to $1,301 per ounce from $1,310 on Tuesday.
Date created : 2014-07-16