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Investment market update

Early Trading

UK stocks are set to open flat to moderately lower this morning, as traders reflect on the latest economic growth data out of China.

World Markets

Asian stocks pared losses after China reported third-quarter economic growth of 6.9% that beat estimates.

US stocks closed up Friday on the back of positive corporate results, a day after hitting an eight-week high. General Electric Co. rose to a seven-year high amid better-than-estimated quarterly profits; the stock rallied 3.4% to its highest since September 2008.

UK stocks rose on Friday to trim their weekly drop, fuelled by gains in Shire Plc and GlaxoSmithKline Plc., up 3.1% and 1.1% respectively. Drugmaker Shire was the top gainer on the FTSE 100, amid speculation that it was looking to take over US rival Radius Health.


China’s economy expanded quicker than economists forecast in the third quarter as the services sector propped up the world’s second-largest economy, suggesting monetary and fiscal stimulus is keeping Premier Li Keqiang’s 2015 expansion target within reach. Gross domestic product rose 6.9% in the three months through September from a year earlier, beating economists’ estimates for 6.8%.

European Central Bank President Mario Draghi will convene his Governing Council on the Mediterranean island of Malta this week to set monetary policy for a 19-nation region that is seeing its recovery buffeted by slowing international trade and global market volatility. Officials are likely to say by the end of the year that they have no choice but to add stimulus, and may even reach that conclusion as soon as Thursday.

Asking prices for homes in London surged by £10,000 this month as sellers took advantage of their market dominance to squeeze more from prospective buyers.

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