Euro, US stock markets up after German vote

European and US stock markets have jumped after Germany's parliament voted overwhelmingly to boost the eurozone rescue fund and positive US growth and unemployment figures.

Frankfurt's DAX rose 1.10 per cent to 5,639.58 points and Paris 1.07 per cent to 3,027.65 points.

Milan jumped 2.07 per cent despite Italy being forced to pay sharply higher interest to borrow funds in its first debt auction since having its credit rating downgraded by Standard & Poor's last week.

London's FTSE-100 also rose after the German vote but in the end was dragged down 0.40 per cent to 5,196.84 points by weak mining stocks.

Stocks on Wall Street pared earlier gains in late trading as tech companies fell. The Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 0.1 per cent to 11023.88 and the Standard & Poor's 500 Index fell 0.6 per cent to 1143.85.

Advanced Micro Devices tumbled 15 per cent, leading the S&P 500 lower, after the computer chipmaker lowered its forecasts for sales and earnings in the third quarter. Deutsche Bank cut its price target for the computer chip maker.

Crude oil for November delivery rose 2 per cent to US$82.79 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, clawing back much of the previous session's losses after t US economic data and European progress stoked optimism demand for fuel will increase.

Gold for December delivery was little changed at about US$1,616 an ounce.

The German parliament passed a beefed-up rescue fund for stricken eurozone countries by a large majority on Thursday in a vote seen as crucial to stem financial market turmoil.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel also got the boost she wanted as an overwhelming majority of her own deputies voted in favour of the proposal.

The vote before the Bundestag lower house on expanding the 440 billion euros bailout fund had seen as a crucial test of Merkel's authority amid fears of a major backbench rebellion.

"Stocks jumped ... as investors digested news that the German parliament had easily passed a vote to allow the July changes to the EFSF rescue fund, although the euro fell back from its highs of the session," said Kathleen Brooks, an analyst at traders Forex.com.

The European single currency climbed to US$1.3626 from US$1.3536 late in New York on Wednesday. The US dollar rose to 76.71 yen from 76.53 yen on Wednesday.

"The euro has managed to sustain the rally that began on Monday; however news that Germany had passed the vote on the EFSF hasn't triggered a relief rally," Brooks said.

"This could be because a lot was priced in already but the euro may remain stuck in a range for some time yet."

German deputies voted by 523 to 85 in favour of expanding the size and the scope of the European Financial Stability Facility (EFSF). Three abstained.

Germany became the 11th of 17 eurozone states to agree to beef up the EFSF and hand it new powers, for example to buy bonds of struggling nations.

Also on Thursday, international auditors resumed talks in Greece to decide whether the government in Athens was doing enough to merit more financial aid amid mounting social tension over the government's austerity measures.

Asian stock markets also mostly rose on Thursday, with Tokyo closing up 0.99 per cent and Seoul rallying 2.68 per cent. Sydney, however, slipped 0.77 per cent. Hong Kong was closed due to a typhoon.

AFP/BUSINESSDESK

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