Investors Eye Middle East Conflict

 – European shares climbed on Monday, with miners in the lead on optimism around demand from top consumer China, although trading was cautious as investors weighed prospects of an escalation in the Middle East conflict.

The STOXX 600 .STOXX was up 0.4% by 0707 GMT.

The mining index .SXPP rose 1.3% as prices of base metals were lifted by hopes of stronger demand from China after data last week signalled some signs of stabilisation in the world’s second-largest economy.

Also boosting the index was a nearly 4% gain in shares of SSAB SSABa.ST after JP Morgan upgraded the Swedish steel company to “overweight” from “neutral”.

Global risk sentiment was still on shaky grounds over concerns that the Israel-Hamas conflict would spill over to the broader region, gaining steam after Iran warned Israel of escalation.

Among other single stocks, Frankfurt-listed shares of BioNTech 22UAy.DE fell nearly 5% after partner PfizerPFE.N on Friday slashed its full-year revenue forecast on lower sales of its COVID-19 vaccine and treatment.

(Reporting by Amruta Khandekar; Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips)

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