By Anna Isaac
-- Dow futures up
-- U.S. Treasury yields rise
-- Asian, European stocks climb
Global stocks gained ahead of expected easing from the European Central Bank and after China exempted certain U.S. products from tariffs.
Futures for the Dow Jones Industrial Average edged up 0.2% on Wednesday. The contracts don't necessarily predict moves after the opening bell.
The Stoxx Europe 600 rose 0.7% in afternoon trade, with Germany's DAX up 0.9% and France's CAC 40 up 0.5%.
Shares of London Stock Exchange Group gained 4.2% after Hong Kong Exchanges & Clearing made an offer to buy it in a $36.56 billion cash-and-share deal.
Meanwhile, shares of Prosus, the Naspers Ltd. spinoff, had their debut on Amsterdam's Euronext. A valuation of nearly EUR120 billion ($132.51 billion) made it Europe's largest listed consumer internet company.
China said Wednesday that higher tariffs wouldn't be levied against a variety of U.S. imports for a year, starting Sept. 17, and that it would continue to review more goods for exemption.
Hong Kong's Hang Seng led gains, climbing 1.8%, while Japan's Nikkei rose 1%. The Shanghai Composite was the exception, with a fall of 0.4%.
Korea's Kospi climbed 0.8% after positive jobs data from the country helped bolster confidence in its economy, suggesting that government stimulus efforts were proving fruitful.
In Europe, Zara-owner Inditex, the world's largest fashion retailer by sales, saw its share price fall 2.6% after it reported earnings for the first half of the year.
Investors have shown signs in recent days of expecting less stimulus from the European Central Bank when it meets on Thursday.
"Ahead of the ECB meeting investors seemed to take some chips off the table with aggressive expectations being pared back," said Antoine Bouvet, senior rates strategist at ING Bank in a note.
Still, investors were expecting lower interest rates from the ECB, and from the Federal Reserve when the U.S. central bank meets next week. On Wednesday, President Trump called again for looser policy, when he tweeted, "The Federal Reserve should get our interest rates down to ZERO, or less, and we should then start to refinance our debt."
The yield on the benchmark 10-year German bund was at minus 0.555% on Wednesday. Meanwhile, 10-year U.S. Treasury yields rose to 1.730%, from 1.706% on Tuesday. Bond yields and prices move in opposite directions.
The drivers for rising yields included better news on U.S.-China trade and a reduced likelihood of a no-deal Brexit, according to Oliver Jones, market economist at Capital Economics.
Higher yields may offer relief for major banks, easing pressure on their balance sheets after negative interest rates have eaten into profits in Europe. The banking sector within Europe's Stoxx 600 climbed 1.3%, marking its sixth- straight day of gains.
In commodities, oil prices rebounded from losses that came after Mr. Trump ousted John Bolton as his national security adviser. Brent crude, the global benchmark, was up by 0.9% at $62.95 a barrel.
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