LONDON - World stock markets turned higher in Europe on Monday following losses in Asia and after the release of robust Chinese trade figures. Investor sentiment remains fragile, however, amid concerns about the global economic outlook.
France's CAC 40 was up 0.3 percent at 4,086.32 and Germany's DAX rose 0.4 percent to 8,826.35. Britain's FTSE 100 edged up 0.1 percent to 6,344.96. Futures pointed to gains on Wall Street on the open. Dow and S&P 500 futures were both up 0.1 percent.
Trading had been weaker in Asia earlier. China's Shanghai Composite fell 0.4 percent to 2,366.01, though Hong Kong's Hang Seng added 0.2 percent to 23,143.38. South Korea's Kospi dropped 0.7 percent to 1,927.21 Australia's S&P/ASX 200 declined 0.6 percent to 5,155.50. Markets in Southeast Asia and New Zealand also dropped. Stock markets in Japan were closed for a holiday.
The main factor weighing on stocks since last week has been concern over global growth. The International Monetary Fund last week trimmed its global forecasts for this year and next, citing weakness in Japan, Latin America and Europe. The global economy will expand 3.3 percent this year instead of 3.4 percent and expand 3.8 percent in 2015. The IMF said recovery is "weak and uneven" in the advanced economies. Disappointing economic indicators from Germany also suggested Europe's recovery is likely to be even weaker than expected.
Traders found some solace in upbeat Chinese trade figures for September, which showed an acceleration in exports growth and a pickup in imports. The Customs Administration said Monday that exports rose 15.2 percent from the same month last year, while imports were up 6.9 percent. Exports grew 9.4 percent in August while imports shrank for a second month in a row. Analysts cautioned, however, that the improvement in imports was driven by demand for components used in export manufacturing rather than a robust domestic economy.
Investors are likely to look out for more corporate earnings in the U.S. this week, including banks like Citigroup Inc. on Tuesday, Bank of America Corp. on Wednesday and Goldman Sachs on Thursday. Google Inc. will release on Thursday and General Electric Co. is due Friday.
Among U.S. economic indicators, traders will be watching out for retail sales and industrial production on Wednesday and Thursday.
Benchmark U.S. crude dropped $1.17 to $84.65 per barrel. On Friday, the contract inched up 5 cents to $85.82. Meanwhile, the dollar fell to 107.39 yen from 107.65 yen late Friday. The euro rose to $1.2683 from $1.2626.