PARIS (Alliance News) - The European markets are trading higher on Wednesday, ahead of the release in the US of ADP's private sector payrolls report for June. That said, the gains were limited as traders were cautious before the central bank decision Thursday.
On the economic front, producer prices in the euro area declined at a slower pace for the second straight month in May, in line with the expectations of economists, figures from Eurostat showed.
Industrial producer prices in the domestic market dropped 1.0% year-on-year in May, slower than April's 1.2% decline. In March, prices fell 1.7%.
UK house price growth accelerated further to 11.8% in June from 11.1% in May, Nationwide said Wednesday. Compared to May, house prices gained 1% in June.
The Euro Stoxx 50 index of eurozone bluechip stocks is adding 0.02%, while the Stoxx Europe 50 index, which includes some major UK companies, is gaining 0.34%.
The German DAX, the UK'sFTSE 100 and Switzerland's SMI are gaining between 0.2% and 0.4%, while the French CAC 40 is fractionally up.
In Frankfurt, ThyssenKrupp is gaining 1.7% and Lanxess is adding 1.6%.
BMW is gaining 0.8%. It was reported that the automaker is planning to invest about USD1 billion for its first assembly plant in Mexico.
Bilfinger, which cut full year outlook on Tuesday, is gaining 2.3% despite negative broker comments.
Deutsche Lufthansa is losing close to 3%. Barclays cut the stock to ''Equalweight'' from ''Overweight.''
In Paris, Alcatel Lucent gained over 4% reportedly on a broker upgrade.
Carrefour and EDF are rising about 1.5% each.
Orange, which was said to be in talks to buy a stake in Bouygues Telecom, said it cannot take part in an operation to consolidate the French telecom market, as conditions have not been met. The stock is declining more than 3%. Bouygues is losing 2.7%.
In London, Standard Chartered and Associated British Foods are gaining around 2% each.
Kier Group, which issued a trading update, is gaining more than 3%.
Internet media company Blinkx plunged 45%, after the company said its trading for the first half has been below management expectations.
Dufry is gaining 4% in Zurich after a positive broker recommendation.
Roche is gaining moderately after announcing the acquisition of a cancer-drug maker.
The Asian stocks advanced strongly, tracking the positive close on Wall Street overnight.
In the US, futures point to a higher open on Wall Street. In the previous session, stocks moved sharply higher over the course of the trading day. The Dow advanced 0.8%, the Nasdaq jumped 1.1% and the S&P 500 climbed 0.7%.
Crude for August delivery is losing USD0.35 to USD104.99 per barrel, while gold is rising USD1.7 to USD1328.3 a troy ounce.