Stocks and commodities advanced after Spain sold more debt than targeted and the International Monetary Fund increased its forecasts for economic growth. The pound strengthened as U.K. inflation unexpectedly accelerated.
The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index gained 0.2 percent at 9:30 a.m. in New York and the Stoxx Europe (SXXP) 600 Index advanced 1.3 percent. The yield on the Spanish 10-year bond fell 17 basis points to 5.90 percent, with the similar-maturity Italian yield 11 basis points lower. The pound strengthened against 12 of its 16 most-traded peers after U.K. consumer prices rose 3.5 percent in March, the first increase in six months.
The IMF increased its outlook for global growth in 2012 to 3.5 percent from 3.3 percent and lifted its forecast for the U.S. expansion to 2.1 percent from 1.8 percent. Spain sold 12- month and 18-month bills a day after yields on its 10-year bonds reached the highest level this year. German’s ZEW survey of investor confidence unexpectedly rose to a two-year high.