LONDON — Europe’s stock markets made modest gains in morning trading on Wednesday, with less than 24 hours to go before Britain’s Brexit referendum on Thursday.
The FTSE MIB in Milan was the only market to advance substantially, rising 2.5 percent to 17,353.45, followed by the DAX in Frankfurt, which was up 0.4 percent to 10,056.73. The CAC 40 in Paris and the FTSE 100 in London each climbed 0.2 percent, to 4,375.96 and to 6,236.72, respectively.
The euro traded at $1.13, while the pound fetched $1.47 and the Swiss franc equaled $1.04 at 11:50 a.m. CET.
Retail and luxury stocks were mostly down, with the morning’s biggest fallers including Debenhams, 4.5 percent to 0.71 pounds; Primark’s parent Associated British Foods, 3.1 percent to 28.12 pounds; Tod’s, 2.2 percent to 53.70 euros, and Marks & Spencer Group, 1.2 percent to 3.60 pounds.
Earlier on Wednesday UBS issued its market predictions in the event of “remain” and “leave” votes following the referendum.
In the event the U.K. stays in the European Union, the bank foresees “a significant relief rally” and for the Standard & Poor’s 500 to reach “new highs.” If Britons vote to leave, the bank said there is “significant room for downside” in equities, with the pound coming under “significant pressure,” while the euro would remain stable.