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European shares bounce higher on Chinese data and Black Friday

The sales bonanza that is Black Friday and some unexpectedly strong Chinese PMI data helped lift the FTSE 0.7% this morning. Although Black Friday figures for the UK have not been published yet US numbers are already showing record highs with digital shopping bouncing another 14%. Good news for retailers is that the shopping fest will spill into this week under the catchy new label of Cyber Monday.

US-China relations could become frostier 
The two sets of Chinese PMI data – the state numbers compiled by the National Bureau of Statistics tracking large enterprises and the private Caixin data focusing more on smaller and medium sized businesses – unexpectedly showed growth in both segments of manufacturing. As the US-China trade deal seemingly teeters in a limbo any signs that the country’s industrial growth has not been excessively damaged by the dispute is being welcomed by the markets both in Asia and in Europe. In London, unsurprisingly, miners led the way higher with Rio Tinto, Glencore and BHP Group gaining the most ground.

At the other end of the index shares in online retail grocer Ocado dipped as investors took some profits off the table following last week’s rally prompted by a deal with Japanese chain Aeon. 

However, relations between the US and China are about to get frostier after China cancelled a US navy visit to Hong Kong and introduced sanctions on several US organizations which it blames for getting involved in Hong Kong protests. This could hit stocks across the board because it is likely to make a trade deal even more elusive. 

UK competition watchdog has Alphabet in its sights 
When the US markets open later today Google owner Alphabet will be in focus after the UK competition watchdog said it was scrutinizing the firm’s purchase of big-data firm Looker Data Sciences. Shares have already dipped during a shorter trading day Friday, closing down 0.61%.



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