Global equities marched higher Thursday as another raft of poor US economic data reinforced expectations that the Federal Reserve will likely delay an interest rate hike.
European and Asian stocks advanced from recent losses that had been sparked by concerns over the potential impact of China's economic slowdown.
"It (Other OTC: ITGL - news) ?s been a more positive start to the day on Thursday, with UK and European shares higher after three days of losses," said analyst Jasper Lawler at traders CMC Markets.
"The weak data seen from the US, notably the disappointing retail sales, has actually increased certainty because a Federal Reserve rate hike this year now seems highly unlikely."
US retail sales rose by half as much as expected in September, while August was revised down, official data showed Wednesday.
In addition, the Fed's closely-watched Beige Book report said while expansion continued modestly, the stronger dollar in recent months was "restraining manufacturing activity as well as tourism spending".
The news comes after a below-par jobs report at the start of the month and adds to a sense that the world's biggest economy is stuttering, giving the Fed more reason to hold off a rate rise.
?What bad news there is I think people are getting more confident that it can be dealt with by leaving policy looser for longer,? said Ben Kumar, who helps oversee about $14 billion as an investment manager at Seven Investment Management in London.
?There are some decent earnings reports coming through; there are some bad ones too, but that?s OK,? Kumar told Bloomberg News.
- Liquidity tap left on? -
The Fed has held its key rate locked near zero, at an unprecedented low of 0-0.25 percent, since December 2008 in order to stimulate economic growth.
The path of American interest rates is vital for global markets because the United States is the world's biggest economy.
"No rate hike keeps the liquidity tap on," noted VTB Capital economist Neil MacKinnon.
In midday deals, London's benchmark FTSE 100 index won 0.92 percent to 6,327.10 points compared with Wednesday's close.
Frankfurt's DAX 30 climbed 1.42 percent to 10,0056 points and the Paris CAC 40 rose 1.24 percent to 4,666.
In foreign exchange, the European single currency slipped to $1.1446, from $1.1469 late in New York on Wednesday.
Mining share prices were spurred higher in London by a recovery in commodity prices, dealers said.
Shares (Berlin: DI6.BE - news) in troubled resources giant Glencore (Xetra: A1JAGV - news) won 2.79 percent to 123.35 pence, while fellow miner Antofagasta (Other OTC: ANFGY - news) added 1.12 percent to 587 pence.
The biggest loser was Britain's luxury fashion group Burberry, whose share price collapsed after admitting that demand had been hit by China's slowdown.
Burberry shares tumbled 10.85 percent to stand at 1,265 pence.
Sales flatlined at £1.105 billion ($1.704 billion, 1.485 billion euros) in the six months to September compared with £1.1 billion a year earlier, said Burberry, which is famous for its trench coats and signature accessories (Other OTC: UBGXF - news) .