By Steve Goldstein, MarketWatch
European stocks on Tuesday extended recent gains as economies reopen, with German stocks booming after a three-day break.
The German DAX /zigman2/quotes/210597999/delayed DX:DAX -0.45% rallied 3.7% following the Ascension Day holiday, with big gains for automobile maker Daimler /zigman2/quotes/205332368/delayed DE:DAI -0.16% and airline Deutsche Lufthansa /zigman2/quotes/205496028/delayed DE:LHA +1.98% .
Other markets rose as well, with the U.K. FTSE 100 /zigman2/quotes/210598409/delayed UK:UKX -0.02% up 1.1% and French CAC 40 /zigman2/quotes/210597958/delayed FR:PX1 -0.41% climbing 2.1%. See London Markets.
The gains came as investors continued to place bets on the economic recovery. The Stoxx Europe 600 /zigman2/quotes/210599654/delayed XX:SXXP -0.25% coming into Tuesday had closed higher for five of the last six sessions. Manufacturing purchasing managers indexes from the U.S. and Europe pointed to improvement in May from April, even as they registered grim readings.
“Governments have been taking steps to loosen their lockdown restrictions, so there is a growing feeling that things are slowly going back to normal. The absence of a serious trade rift between the U.S. and China is helping sentiment too,” said David Madden, markets analyst at CMC Markets U.K.
Bruno Le Maire, the French finance minister, said his country’s economy will drop 11% this year, which is worse than the government’s previous prediction of an 8% decline.
German commercial real-estate company Aroundtown /zigman2/quotes/200156886/delayed DE:AT1 -1.01% surged 12% on a €500 million stock buyback program, as it said the firm’s share price is at a significant discount to its net asset value. It also said it has agreed to sell €400 million of noncore and/or mature properties at book value.
Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield /zigman2/quotes/207218984/delayed NL:URW -3.75% climbed 12% as it reported that 65 of its 90 shopping centers have reopened and at least 87% will be open by the middle of June. It said tenants have generally seen higher conversion rates and basket sizes than expected.
U.S. stock futures /zigman2/quotes/209948968/delayed ES00 +0.02% turned higher, shaking off early losses after President Donald Trump threatened martial law in response to rioting that followed protests against police brutality.
“Dealers on this side of the Atlantic have watched in horror at the scenes of rioting and looting in the U.S. It hasn’t impacted sentiment in this part of the world, but it might influence the U.S. session when trading gets under way later,” said Madden.