European stocks showed a marked improvement on the first half of this week. Banks fared well. Europe’s largest Bank, Santander, led the gainers. Barclays and Lloyds shares jumped. Even Royal Bank of Scotland rallied.
Shares rose in many quarters, from Europe’s largest engineering company Siemens, to Sanofi, France’s biggest drugmaker. Munich, the world’s largest reinsurer made gains. More than half of over one hundred top companies have reported results which exceeded analysts predictions. They say the Easter holidays as well as improved consumer confidence, boosted sales. Some analysts say people are looking to a possible economic recovery by the end of the year.