By Emily Horton
European stock indexes climbed on Wednesday, as optimism over ongoing U.S./China trade talks helped investors shrug off worries about an economic slowdown in Germany.
Auto stocks led the gainers, performing well, but France's Airport de Paris (ADP.FR) was lagging in the Stoxx 600.(ADP.FR)
How are the markets performing?
All major European markets were in the black on Wednesday, with the Stoxx Europe 600 adding 1% to 349.15, after finishing up 0.9% the previous day.
The German DAX jumped by 1% to 10,910.90 and France's CAC 40 gained 1.2% to 4,829.12.
Meanwhile, Italy's MIB added 1% to 19,222.21 and the U.K.'s FTSE 100 rose by 1% to 6,926.11.
The euro climbed to $1.1458, compared with $1.1442 in New York late on Tuesday, while the British pound rose to $1.2761 from $1.2716.
What is driving markets?
German exports declined in November -- by 0.4% to EUR110.6 billion ($126.6 billion), the Federal Statistical Office said on Wednesday, underscoring fears that trade tensions are hampering the country's economy.
However, there is optimism that trade talks that ended Wednesday between the U.S. and China will see a positive outcome. President Donald Trump is reported to be eager to reach an agreement to help boost the sagging stock market, according to Bloomberg News (https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2019-01-08/trump-said-to-want-trade-deal-with-china-to-boost-stock-market?srnd=premium). Trump tweeted on Tuesday that discussions in Beijing were "going very well."
Minutes from last month's Fed meeting, where the decision was made to raise interest rates, are due out at 2 p.m. in Washington.
In the U.K., Prime Minister Theresa May has warned the government it is delusional to believe that a new divorce deal from the European Union could be negotiated if parliament vote down her proposed exit agreement next week, Reuters reports (https://uk.reuters.com/article/uk-britain-eu/forget-fantasy-brexit-uk-tells-lawmakers-as-crucial-deal-debate-begins-idUKKCN1P30MD).
What stocks are active?
Auto stocks benefited from trade optimism, with hares of Daimler up 4%, while Volkswagen AG rose nearly 3%.
Airport de Paris (ADP.FR) was the biggest Stoxx 600 decliner on Wednesday, with its stock dropping 5%.
Banking and fund management stocks also lagged behind, with Germany's Deutsche Bank and Man Group both losing nearly 2%.
U.K.-based house-building company Taylor Wimpey jumped 6% after reporting upbeat figures for 2018 . House builder Persimmon rose 4%.