LONDON — European stock markets gained modest ground on Thursday, ahead of the first European Central Bank meeting of the year, which takes place in Frankfurt this morning.
The FTSE MIB in Milan led the way, climbing 0.3 percent to 18,022.26, while the CAC 40 in Paris was up 0.2 percent to 4,134.35 and the DAX in Frankfurt, 0.1 percent to 9,400.31. The FTSE 100 in London advanced 0.1 percent to 5,680.22.
The euro traded at $1.09, while the pound fetched $1.42 and the Swiss franc equaled $1.00 at 10:45 a.m. CET.
Retail and luxury stocks were uneven, with the morning’s biggest risers including Moncler, 1.3 percent to 12.98 euros; Unilever, 1 percent to 37.81 euros; Hugo Boss, 3.9 percent to 66.50 euros, and Boohoo.com, 1.4 percent to 0.37 pounds.
Among the stocks that lost the most ground were Bonmarche Holdings, 3.9 percent to 1.74 pounds; Geox, 1 percent to 3.57 euros, and Adidas, 1.7 percent to 90.50 euros.
Markets, which have had a rollercoaster start to the year, are waiting for a signal from ECB chief Mario Draghi about further plans to respond to an increasingly gloomy macro-economic climate.
Falling oil prices and ongoing doubts about the growth prospects of the Chinese economy have been rattling markets in these first few weeks of 2016.