LONDON An upbeat Chinese manufacturing survey helped offset the disappointment of another round of grim European figures to give markets a lift Thursday -- on a day that will see trading seriously curtailed by the U.S. Thanksgiving holiday.
The optimism in the markets came in the wake of a manufacturing survey from HSBC. Its purchasing managers index, a gauge of activity, rose to a 13-month high of 50.4 for November from the previous month's 49.5. Readings above 50 denote growth.
"Strong manufacturing data from China provided a big enough lure to temp investors back in to equities," said Mike McCudden, head of derivatives at stockbroker Interactive Investor.
After an earlier advance in Asia, European stocks were higher. The gains in Europe came despite a survey showing that the 17-country eurozone remains in recession. Financial information company Markit said its composite PMI, which assesses the service sector as well as manufacturing, for the eurozone rose to 45.8 in November from 45.7 the month before. That signals further contraction in the euro-zone economy, which is now in recession, officially defined as two straight quarters of negative growth.
"The slight rise clearly does nothing to alter our view that the recession has intensified in Q4," said Ben May, European economist at Capital Economics.