(BUSINESS INSIDER) – European stocks rose Wednesday as disappointing US employment and commercial data fueled anticipation of looser monetary policy. Trading was light ahead of the Fourth of July holiday in the US, where markets were closed Thursday.
The payment processor ADP reported American companies hired 102,000 workers in June, below the 140,000 projected by a Reuters poll of economists. The ISM nonmanufacturing PMI also dropped to 55.1 last month, its lowest level in nearly two years, signaling slower growth across sectors such as real estate, retail, finance, and construction.
"This host of reports again validates the slowdown in the US economy and explains why the Fed seems poised to start cutting interest rates as soon as possible," said Konstantinos Anthis, the head of research at ADSS.
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The nomination of the International Monetary Fund's chief, Christine Lagarde, to become the next president of the European Central Bank also fueled positive sentiment. The European Council's support of Lagarde, who has praised the willingness of the ECB's current president, Mario Draghi, to intervene in markets, raised traders' hopes of lower interest rates as well.