European stock markets rallied on Wednesday, as investors are optimistic that removal of COVID-19 restrictions in many countries would fuel economic growth.
The STOXX Europe 600, which includes around 90% of the market capitalization of the European market in 17 countries, rose almost 8 points, or 1.72%, to close at 473.33.
London’s FTSE 100 index gained 76 points, or 1.01%, to end the day at 7,643. Germany’s DAX 30 climbed 239 points, or 1.57%, to finish at 15,483.
France’s CAC 40 added 102 points, or 1.46%, to 7,130 points, while Spain’s IBEX 35 rose 171 points, or 1.98%, to finish at 8,846.
Italy’s FTSE MIB was the best performer of the day, jumping 717 points, or 2.72%, to end at 27,129 points.
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson told parliament on Wednesday that he plans to end all remaining COVID-19 restrictions this month.
Sweden lifted all COVID-19 restrictions as of Wednesday since the pandemic is “under full control,” according to the Public Health Agency.
While Finland said pandemic-related restrictions will be relaxed on Feb. 14 and lifted as of March 1, Denmark completely dropped its restrictions on Feb. 1. Norway announced that restrictions would be scrapped on Feb. 19.
Greece removed testing requirements for vaccinated travelers from Feb. 7, Switzerland and Austria relaxed travel restrictions for UK travelers, and travelers to the Netherlands with a booster vaccine no longer need to quarantine from Feb. 2.
The EU recommended that anyone traveling within the bloc from Feb. 1 onwards would only need a basic green pass health certificate, which could be obtained via vaccination, recovery, or a recent negative COVID-19 test.
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