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Draghi Signals More Stimulus

European Stocks Climb After Draghi Signals More Stimulus

European stocks rose, following two weeks of equity gains, after European Central Bank PresidentMario Draghi signaled policy makers are ready to add fresh monetary stimulus. U.S. index futures climbed, while Asian shares were little changed.

Bankia (BKIA) SA gained 1.4 percent after a report that Spain won’t sell more shares of the nationalized lender before October. Vivendi SA climbed 1.4 percent after a report that Telefonica SA is considering raising its bid for the French media company’s Brazilian Internet-provider unit GVT.Roche Holding AG (ROG) advanced after agreeing to buy InterMune Inc. for $8.3 billion in cash.

The Stoxx Europe 600 Index rose 0.8 percent to 339.54 at 8:05 a.m. in London. The gauge rallied 2.1 percent last week, the most since February, as investors bet that an industrial slowdown in the euro area will increase pressure on the ECB to introduce asset purchases known as quantitative easing. Standard & Poor’s 500 Index futures climbed 0.4 percent today, while the MSCI Asia Pacific Index advanced 0.1 percent. The U.K. market is closed today for a holiday.

Draghi told his international counterparts in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, on Aug. 22 that investor bets on euro-area inflation have “exhibited significant declines at all horizons” in August. He has previously said that any worsening of the medium-term inflation outlook would provide a reason for the ECB to carry out quantitative easing.

Yellen Comments

The ECB’s economic outlook increasingly contrasts with that of the U.S. central bank. Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen said at the Jackson Hole conference that the U.S. labor market has made “considerable progress,” though too many Americans are still out of work. Fed officials are slowing monetary stimulus and debating when to exit from ultra-loose policy.

A report at 10 a.m. Frankfurt time may show German business confidence fell in August. The Ifo institute’s business climate index, based on a survey of 7,000 executives, slid to 107, according to the median economist estimate compiled by Bloomberg News. That would be the fourth-straight monthly decline and the lowest since July 2013.

Data at 10 a.m. in Washington may show U.S. new-home sales rose to a 429,000 annualized pace in July from 406,000 in June, according to a Bloomberg News survey.

Bankia Shares

Bankia advanced 1.4 percent to 1.46 euros. There won’t be any sale of shares before bank-stress test results are known, Europa Press reported, citing Economy Minister Luis de Guindos. Spain may repay the European-Union aid given to the nation’s banks earlier than it has to, Guindos also said in the interview.

Vivendi rose 1.4 percent to 19.76 euros. The increased bid from Telefonica could value GVT at 8 billion euros ($10.6 billion), Italian newspaper Il Messaggero reported, without citing anyone. Madrid-based Telefonica, Europe’s second-largest phone company, offered on Aug. 5 to buy GVT in a deal valued at 6.7 billion euros. People familiar with the talks have said Telecom Italia SpA is preparing an offer for the unit valued at as much as 7 billion euros.

Roche gained 0.6 percent to 267.50 Swiss francs. The world’s largest maker of cancer drugs is strengthening its portfolio of medicines for respiratory ailments by purchasing Brisbane, California-based InterMune for $74 a share, the Swiss company said yesterday. The agreement reflects Roche’s confidence in InterMune’s pirfenidone, potentially the first drug in the U.S. for a rare lung disease.

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