European markets have closed after a day which saw a surge in stocks and shares – following a report from the US showing that a slight fall in the unemployment rate.
The US figures showed that fewer jobs had been lost than at any other time since the recession began. It was seen as a sign that the recovery is lifing the jobs market out of the worst slump since World War II. Markets in Europe hit a two-week high immediately after the US figures were published. Fund managers said the news would allow the market to take off without the support of government stimulus plans. The FTSE rose to its highest level for a fortnight and closed up 0.18%. Bank were among the top gainers, their stocks rebounding from earlier falls.