Positive momentum from earnings filtered through stocks after Societe Generale SA beat estimates, while Treasuries fell with German bunds and the debt of France and Italy gained amid ebbing political risk.
Banks paced gains as the Stoxx Europe 600 Index rose for a third day. Societe Generale benefited from consumer banking, offering relief to lenders that have been dragged lower by anxiety over looming elections. Treasuries halted the longest stretch of gains since the weeks before June’s Brexit vote while bonds of peripheral countries and France rebounded. Gold backed off its highest level since November.
An upbeat corporate outlook following many better-than-expected earnings is proving a welcome diversion from risks surrounding elections in at least three core euro zone countries. As the wait for details on Donald Trump’s pro-growth policies goes on, the mixed sentiment has been on display globally, helping boost demand for bonds and precious metals viewed as defensive plays at the same time as riskier assets such as emerging-market stocks.
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