Investing.com

Investing.com - European stocks were mixed to higher in quiet trade on Monday, as strong economic growth data from the euro zone published on Friday continued to support.



During European afternoon trade, the EURO STOXX 50 added 0.18%, France’s CAC 40 eased 0.07%, while Germany’s DAX 30 edged up 0.08%.



On Friday, better-than-expected euro zone fourth quarter growth data eased concerns that the European Central Bank could tighten monetary policy at its next meeting.



The euro zone economy expanded 0.3% in the three months to December and expanded 0.5% from the same period a year earlier.



Germany’s gross domestic product rose 0.4% in the fourth quarter, ahead of expectations for 0.3% growth, while France avoided falling back into a recession, posting growth of 0.3%.





Separately, Italy''s center-left leader Matteo Renzi was set to be nominated as Italy''s next prime minister after Enrico Letta officially resigned on Friday.



Financial stocks were mostly lower, as French lenders BNP Paribas and Societe Generale declined 0.85% and 0.36%, while Germany''s Deutsche Bank slipped 0.18%.



Among peripheral lenders, Spanish banks Banco Santander and BBVA gained 0.31% and 0.44% respectively while Italy''s Unicredit fell 0.12%.



Elsewhere, Bouygues shed 0.33% after the French construction and telecommunications company said it will take a writedown of EUR1.4 billion on its Alstom investment in the fourth quarter.



In London, FTSE 100 jumped 1.05%, led by Hammerson, up 4.09%, after the U.K.''s third-largest real estate company by market capitalization, said the value of its properties rose last year as it added assets in the U.K. and France.



Meanwhile, mining stocks remained sharply higher. Shares in Glencore Xstrata advanced 0.32% and rival Vedanta Resources rallied 1.73%, while BHP Billiton and Randgold Resources surged 1.19% and 2.11%.



Financial stocks also remained on the upside, as HSBC Holdings and Lloyds Banking gained 1.29% and 0.64% respectively, while the Royal Bank of Scotland and Barclays climbed 1.73% and 0.74%.



In the U.S., equity markets were to remain closed for Presidents'' Day.





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