European shares stretch rally over ECB debt plan

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European shares stretch rally over ECB debt plan

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Stocks markets in Europe extended their gains on Friday as investors welcomed the European Central Bank’s latest bond-buying plan.

The broad FTSEurofirst 300 index of top European companies was up 0.3 percent in early trade after climbing 2.6 percent on Thursday when the plan was announced.

The “feel-good” wave swept across Asian too where shares recorded their biggest daily gain in nearly five weeks.

Japan’s Nikkei average rose 1.8 percent, Shangai jumped 2.3 percent while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng advanced 1.9 percent. There were gains too for Korea’s Kospi which ended up 2.2. percent.

The ECB’s announcement also boosted the euro currency, which rose against the US dollar and the Japanese yen.