European stocks advanced for the first time in three days as Federal Reserve chairman nominee Janet Yellen said she is committed to promoting a strong U.S. economic recovery and will ensure monetary stimulus isn’t removed too soon.
U.K. stocks swung between gains and losses, with the benchmark FTSE 100 Index heading for its third consecutive weekly increase, as a report showed Britain’s economic growth last quarter met forecasts.
European stocks posted their first weekly decline this month as Italian bonds fell after a debt auction, while concern mounted that political wrangling in Washington will lead to a shutdown of the U.S. government.
The European Union will probably stick to a policy of seeking temporary solutions to its debt crisis in the coming weeks rather than move toward a fiscal union or breakup of the euro, a top Fitch Ratings official said.
European stocks were little changed after their biggest weekly advance since April, as Chinese exports rose more than expected and investors awaited a U.S. decision this week on possible air strikes against Syria.
U.S. stocks fell, with the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index capping its worst monthly drop since May 2012, as investors weighed the prospects for American military action in Syria and disappointing data on consumer spending.
U.S. stocks fell for a third week in four, capping the worst month since May 2012, as lawmakers considered a military strike in Syria and investors weighed economic data to gauge the Federal Reserve’s next move on stimulus.