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Europe Markets: European stocks climb in step with strong start to May for Wall Street

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European stocks climbed on Monday, boosted by economic data, with auto and apparel makers leading the way higher, and airlines getting a bump as the European Union proposed opening borders to nonessential travel.

The Stoxx Europe 600 index
SXXP,
+0.58%

climbed 0.6% to 439.60, after April’s gain of 1.8%, the third-straight monthly rise. The German DAX
DAX,
+0.66%

gained 0.6% and the French CAC 40 index
PX1,
+0.61%

rose 0.5%. The FTSE 100 index
UKX,
+0.12%

wasn’t trading, due to a holiday. The pound
GBPUSD,
+0.69%

surged against the dollar, up 0.6% to $1.3896, while the euro
EURUSD,
+0.32%

saw a smaller gain.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average
DJIA,
+0.79%

climbed over 200 points in early trading, while the S&P 500
SPX,
+0.35%

also climbed, and the Nasdaq Composite
COMP,
-0.38%

to a lesser extent. All three indexes logged gains in April.

Data in Europe showed German retail sales surged in March, the strongest increase since restrictions were imposed in March 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic and beating forecasts. And final eurozone manufacturing economy activity in the region registered a 62.9 reading in April, a fresh high.

Shares of Deutsche Lufthansa
LHA,
+2.63%

rose 2% and Aeroports de Paris
ADP,
+3.70%

rose 1.6% after the European Commission said that it would propose member countries open their borders to nonessential travel by those visitors who had been vaccinated and hailed from a country with “good epidemiological situation.”

Royal Philips
PHIA,
+1.66%

was a big gainer, rising 1% after the Dutch conglomerate said it had rejected an unsolicited takeover bid by private-equity firms EQT AB and Stonepeak Infrastructure Partners, and a separate one by investment firm KKR & Co. Neither Stonepeak nor KKR responded to a request for comment by Dow Jones.

Drug companies Roche
ROG,
+1.38%

and Novartis
NOVN,
+0.77%

NVS,
+1.42%

rose 1% and 0.8%, respectively.

Metals Stocks: Gold prices jump to start May trade amid subdued dollar, bond yields

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