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Today's top story: Russian heyday of acceptable corruption is over, says Tom Tungendhat

Today's leader: After Carillion, breaking up the Big Four is not the answer

Full of royal wedding glee, European traders will return to their desks this morning buoyed by a softening of trade tensions between the US and China.

The FTSE 100 is expected to open 51 points higher at 7,829, fresh from hitting all-time close of business highs last week. Analysts are calling Germany's Dax 55 points up at 13,132 and France's Cac 23 points ahead at 5,637.

US treasury secretary Steven Mnuchin said last night Washington's trade war with China had been put "on hold". His comments prompted the MSCI Asia-Pacific excluding Japan to advance over 0.5 per cent. Japan's Nikkei rose by 0.43 per cent.

“The weekend talk appears to have made progress. While they still need to work out details of a wider trade deal, it is positive for markets that they struck a truce,” said Hirokazu Kabeya, chief global strategist at Daiwa Securities told Reuters.

Trading in the black stuff held firm at near-three and a half year highs, supported by falling production in Venezuela and continued concerns over Middle East tensions.

Brent crude rose 0.8 per cent to $79.10, having hit $80.50 last week, its highest price since November 2014.

Corporate news

  • Monte dei Paschi – Italy must present an exit plan by 2019, says CEO
  • Ryanair – posts record annual profits but delivers a gloomy forecast
  • Thai Airways – after two years, carrier finds a new CEO
  • Dr Martens – reportedly poaches Cath Kidston boss

Data

  • 9.00 – EU financial stability review
  • From 16:15 – US fed members Bostic, Harker and Kashkari deliver speeches

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