LONDON: European stock markets rebounded on Wednesday (Oct 9), helped by reports that China would accept a partial trade deal with the US in key talks this week.
The dollar was mixed while the pound steadied after yet more Brexit-fuelled volatility.
Crude oil prices, which had rallied over one per cent as Turkey launched an offensive against Kurdish militants in northern Syria, trimmed gains after data showed US oil output at record levels and stocks rising.
China remains open to a limited trade deal as long as US President Donald Trump imposes no more tariffs, Bloomberg News and the Financial Times reported, citing people close to the upcoming talks.
In return, Beijing would offer non-core concessions such as purchases of US agricultural products, the reports added.
"This is likely contributing to the gains we're seeing in Europe ... but unless the US is also willing to accept a limited deal - and nothing currently suggests they are - it may not lead to anything," noted Craig Erlam, senior market analyst at Oanda trading group.
"Traders are jumping at the prospect of good news at the moment but there's been so many false dawns in these negotiations, this may just be the latest," he told AFP.
With less than a week to go before the next round of punitive tariffs is due to hit, Beijing's top trade envoy Liu He will on Thursday meet US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin.
"Liu He is coming with real offers, it's not an empty visit," the FT quoted a source as saying.
"The Chinese are ready to de-escalate," the source, briefed on the talks, added.
Asian stock markets had mostly closed lower on Wednesday ahead of the reports of possible progress in the talks, which could extend into Friday and with Trump present.
Asia tracked losses in Wall Street and across Europe from Tuesday as investors fretted over signs the global economy is slowing.
The International Monetary Fund has forecast the weakest growth in a decade owing to the long-running tariff disputes.
With economic data increasingly weak, the fresh hopes sparked by the reports for Thursday's talks provided some much-needed support.
"But overall stock markets are still stuck in a violent see-saw ... as investors try to position themselves ahead of the (talks)," IG chief market analyst Chris Beauchamp said.
Meanwhile oil prices shot 1.6 per cent higher in European afternoon trading as Turkey began an offensive against Kurdish militants in northern Syria.
They later fell back on data from the Energy Information Administration showed production hitting a new record high while stocks rose more than expected.
"It is a little worrying that inventories are rising despite lower prices, as it suggests that demand is weak," said market analyst David Madden at CMC Markets UK.
Crude prices then later pushed higher once again.
Key figures around 1530 GMT:
London - FTSE 100: UP 0.3 per cent at 7,166.50 points (close)
Paris - CAC 40: UP 0.8 per cent at 5,499.14 (close)
Frankfurt - DAX 30: UP 1.0 per cent at 12,094.26 (close)
EURO STOXX 50: UP 0.8 per cent at 3,459.50
Pound/dollar: UP at US$1.2218 from US$1.2213 at 2040 GMT
Euro/pound: UP at 89.85 pence from 89.69 pence
Euro/dollar: UP at US$1.0979 from US$1.0955
Dollar/yen: UP at 107.39 yen from 107.07 yen
Tokyo - Nikkei 225: DOWN 0.6 per cent at 21,456.38 (close)
Hong Kong - Hang Seng: DOWN 0.8 per cent at 25,682.81 (close)
Shanghai - Composite: UP 0.4 per cent at 2,924.86 (close)
Brent North Sea crude: UP 1.4 per cent at US$59.05 per barrel
West Texas Intermediate: UP 1.6 per cent at US$53.49 per barrel