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European stocks closed higher last Friday as investors digested economic data from the region, including a preliminary reading of UK second-quarter GDP, impressions of July inflation in France, Spain and in Italy and industrial production in the euro zone for June.

Camilla Cerea | Bloomberg via Getty Images

European markets closed slightly higher on Monday, continuing the positive trend seen at the close of trading last week.

The pan-European Stoxx 600 ended the session slightly above the flatline after a choppy day. Food and beverages rose 0.9% to lead the gains, while mining stocks fell 1.6%.

Telecom Italia rose 6% to top the benchmark after news that Italy’s far-right Brothers of Italy party, which is leading in the polls, could privatize the phone company.

Swedish group Storskogen closed at the bottom of the index, down nearly 10%, ahead of the release of its second-quarter results on Tuesday.

Global stocks struggled to take off on Monday after weak data from China and Japan raised fears of a broader economic slowdown.

European stocks closed higher last Friday as investors digested economic data from the region, including a preliminary reading of UK second-quarter GDP, impressions of July inflation in France, Spain and in Italy and industrial production in the euro zone for June.

Data released by the UK showed the economy contracted in the second quarter of 2022 as the country’s cost of living crisis hit at home. Official figures showed gross domestic product fell 0.1% quarter on quarter in the second three months of the year, less than the 0.3% contraction analysts expected.

Investors also had colder-than-expected US inflation data last week on their minds. The consumer price index rose 8.5% in July from a year ago, below expectations, mainly due to falling energy prices.

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