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Worries about the political situation in Italy are eroding earlier gains for stocks on the Continent, despite apparent progress in trade talks between China and the US at the weekend.
Stocks have started the session higher on news of a truce between China and the US in their running trade dispute.
The US administration set aside its threat of tariffs on Chinese goods for the moment, following two days of negotiations with Beijing, after China proposed a "significant increase" in its purchases of US-made goods.
Losses in the energy space and among base metals was offset by strong gains in agricultural commodities at the end of the week.
Wall Street finished on a mixed note, weighed down by losses for energy and financials, as traders scanned the headlines swirling about the second round of trade talks between China and the US.
The coming week will bring with it readings on UK retail sales from both the Office for National Statistics and in the form of the latest distributive trades survey from CBI, referencing April and May, respectively.
Bond proxies such as Personal Goods (Unilever) or interest rate sensitive stocks (Construction, CRH) fared best at the end of the week, amid weakness in the pound and a sharp drop in longer-term Gilt yields.
Italian stocks and government bonds slumped with shares of the country's banks bearing the brunt of selling after Italy's main anti-establishment parties, the Five Star and League, threw down the gauntlet to Brussels on austerity and against the bloc's fiscal rules.
Embattled retailer Carpetright announced plans for a £60m placing and open offer on Friday as part of its efforts to turnaround the business.
London stocks edged a little lower on Friday as investors paused for breath following a record closing high a day earlier and with reports of a possible fraud investigation into Glencore dampening investor sentiment heading into the weekend.
Wall Street is set for a higher open, with traders scanning the headlines swirling about the second round of trade talks between China and the US.
Italian stocks are slumping after Italy's main anti-establishment parties threw down the gauntlet to Brussels on austerity and against the bloc's fiscal rules.
The pound edged higher on Thursday on the back of reports that the UK was preparing its own backstop deal to guard against the risk of delays in the Brexit negotiations that might see the country simply crash out.
These were the movements among some of the most widely-followed 10-year sovereign bonds:.
Beleaguered mother and child retailer Mothercare has confirmed the closure of 50 stores, announced a refinancing package and said it was re-hiring chief executive Mark Newton-Jones, who stepped down last month, as it swung to a full-year pre-tax loss.
Moves in the commodities space were muted on Thursday, despite the news headlines around oil after Brent crude futures topped the $80 per barrel mark for the first time since 2014.
The main share indices on the Continent finished with across-the-board gains as markets waited on the details of the government coalition deal between Italy's two main anti-establishment parties, the Five Star and the League.
News that Ocado had inked a partnership agreement with US chain Kroger light a fire under the market and the wider sector on Thursday, pushing Food & Drug Retailers to the top of the leaderboard.
Perhaps the most closely-followed lead indicator for factory sector activity in the States jumped past forecasts in May as new orders rocketed.
US jobless claims for last week increased by moderately more than markets were expecting.