LONDON — European stock markets made modest gains in midmorning trading on Wednesday despite Greece defaulting on its debt to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the country’s ongoing fiscal crisis.
The FTSE MIB in Milan led the uptick, advancing 0.9 percent to 22,656.49, followed by the CAC 40 in Paris, 0.6 percent to 4,818.43, and the FTSE 100 in London, 0.5 percent to 6,554.73. The DAX in Frankfurt climbed 0.4 percent to 10,988.92.
The euro traded at $1.12, while the pound fetched $1.57, the Swiss franc equaled $1.07, and the Danish krona bought $0.15 at 10:45 a.m. CET.
Retail and luxury stocks perked up after a slow start to the week, with the morning’s biggest gainers including Yoox Group, 2 percent to 29.60 euros, and Danish high-street jeweler Pandora, 3.3 percent to 743 Danish kroner.
Other gainers included Boohoo.com, 1.9 percent to 0.26 pounds; Jimmy Choo, 1.4 percent to 1.59 pounds, and Adidas, 1.6 percent to 69.72 euros.
Among the few stocks that lost ground were Koovs.com, 2.7 percent to 0.71 pounds; Aeffe, 1.7 percent to 1.84 euros, and Ted Baker, 1 percent to 28.88 pounds.
On Tuesday, Greece failed to pay its 1.6 billion euro debt to the IMF and is seeking emergency financial aid from its creditors. In the meantime, European finance ministers will meet today to discuss new proposals put forward by the Greek government while a nationwide referendum is set for Sunday.
Greek citizens will be asked to vote “yes” or “no” to proposals put forward by Greece’s creditors, and the poll is widely seen as a vote of confidence in the current government and a decision whether to remain the in the euro zone.
European leaders are urging Greeks to vote yes, while Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras is pushing for a no vote in keeping with his anti-austerity stance.