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Europe's plans to reopen lift FTSE

Several European countries are gingerly making steps towards reopening parts of their businesses and restarting schools from next week, providing hope that at least in some parts of the continent life may start returning to its pre-corona form.

Airlines, hotels and non-essential shops which have been closed in the UK during the lock down are showing signs of improvement this morning, as do oil stocks, bolstered by the increase in the oil price.

Just Eat Takeway.com jumped over 10% after the delivery company released its trading update. The newly merged group did unsurprisingly well during the spread of the virus in Europe with orders group-wide rising 50% and specifically in Germany a whopping 126%. The only downside to these numbers is that if Europe starts lifting its lockdowns, and there are several countries that are doing this, like Denmark reopening schools from next week, Austria reopening smaller businesses and shops, and Croatia restarting trade on open markets, deliveries are likely to quickly go down, but possibly not all the way to pre-coronavirus levels.

Investors were surprisingly lenient towards spirit maker Diageo which plans to stop its share buybacks and has abandoned the second phase of its shareholder returns. The stock still rallied 2.8%, mainly because the company said it will still pay its planned dividend.

US initial jobless claims data later today will have the capacity to rattle the markets after the last two weeks during which the US jobless market was devastated by the pandemic. Investors will look for some slowdown in the flood of unemployed and hope for signs of stabilization in the US market.

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