European stock markets closed higher on Tuesday. London's Financial Times-Stock Exchange 100 index gained 36.50 points, or 0.85%, to 4,350.90 as the British Retail Consortium reported UK retail sales rose 1.8% in July, down from 2.4% in June. Also, the UK June trade deficit widened to 4.97 billion pounds from 4.8 billion pounds in May and higher than the 4.5 billion anticipated. Meanwhile, UK CPI fell 0.3% in July. Barclays was higher on renewed speculation it may be a takeover target for New York-based Citigroup. Old Mutual higher on improved earnings.
In Germany, the DAX index was higher by 30.31 points, or 0.82%, to 3,720.69 as the German June trade surplus rose to 14.7 billion euros from 14.1 billion in May. Some investors were encouraged by oil prices pulling back from high levels. Deutsche Boerse was higher as lower second earnings still were better than expected.
In Paris, the CAC 40 index added 35.76 points, or 1.02%, to 3,533.06 as French manufacturing production rose 0.4% in June, vs. 0.7% in May, while industrial production rose 2.7% year on year in June, vs. 3.5% in May. Michelin was lower after Credit Suisse lowered its rating on the stock.
Asian stock markets closed mixed. Japan's Nikkei 225 index gained 44.85 points, or 0.41%, to 10,953.55 but upside was limited by investors' caution over soaring oil prices and ahead of the U.S. central bank's interest-rate decision later in the day. Shares of Japan's big four banks made solid gains while brokerages and general contractors also rose on bargain-hunting. Some investors sold exporters such as Toyota Motor, Nissan Motor and Canon, as the Fed is expected to indicate that it would slow the pace of U.S. interest rate rises this year which could lead to a rise in the yen versus the U.S. dollar and hurt Japanese exports. .
In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng index fell 59.37 points, or 0.48%, 12,408.09, following Monday's lackluster performance on Wall Street, high oil prices and wariness over the Fed meeting. Blue chips were mixed, with heavily-weighted stock, HSBC dipping 0.84% on profit-taking. The bank's share price had gained 4% last week after releasing strong earnings.
Canada's benchmark S&P/TSX rose 47.82 points, or 0.58%, to 8,231.26.