European stocks gained on Monday as several countries began discussing ways to gradually ease coronavirus lockdowns.
In Spain, children were on Sunday (26 April) allowed outside for the first time in six weeks, while a “clear descending trend” in coronavirus cases in the country will soon see authorities outline how the country can move towards “a new normality.”
French prime minister Édouard Philippe will on Tuesday unveil a national strategy for easing the lockdown, while some “strategic” businesses can reopen this week in Italy, provided they receive clearance from local authorities.
“With countries across the world — notably France, Italy, Spain, Australia and New Zealand — aiming to ease some of their lockdown measures this week or next as they try to find the ‘new normal’, the markets rebounded hard on Monday,” said Connor Campbell, a financial analyst at Spreadex.
“Though we have no idea when the terms of lockdown will be altered, let alone ended, in the UK, the examples set by its global, and especially European, peers still sent the FTSE sharply higher,” he said.
The gains in Europe followed a strong trading session in Asia.
Japan’s Nikkei (^N225) rose by more than 2.7% after the Bank of Japan pledged to undertake unlimited bond buying to cushion the country’s economy.
Futures were also pointing to a higher open for US stocks on Monday.