Market Buzz: EU talks to drive indices

Market Buzz: EU talks to drive indices
Russian markets are expected to open slightly higher Thursday as investors keep tabs on an EU summit focused on the bloc's seven-year budget, due to start later that day.

­Russian indices finished in positive territory after a choppy session Wednesday amid growing oil prices and strong consumer data from the US. The MICEX added 0.7% and the RTS jumped 1.3%.

European stocks closed in the black on Wednesday as investors digested news that eurozone finance ministers failed to agree on terms for the next tranche of Greece’s bailout loan. The Stoxx Europe 600 closed 0.2% higher. Germany’s DAX 30 itched 0.2% and France’s CAC 40 rose 0.4%.

US stocks rallied by the end of Wednesday trading after a ceasefire in the Gaza crisis was reported, and improved consumer sentiment in November also supported indices. The Dow Jones rose 0.4%, the S&P 500 gained 0.2% with energy the best performer and the Nasdaq Composite rose 0.3%. US floors will be closed Thursday for the Thanksgiving Day holiday, and will see an abbreviated session on Friday.

Asian markets traded mostly higher Thursday on Chinese data showed that the country’s manufacturing activity expanded for the first time in more than a year. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng climbed 0.65%, but the Shanghai Composite dropped 0.5% and erased Wednesday’s gains. Japan’s Nikkei Stock climbed 1 % supported by exporters, while South Korea’s Kospi added 0.7% and Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 advanced 1%.