NEW YORK (Reuters) – World stock markets rose on Wednesday, with Wall Street’s major indexes hitting one-month highs after strong earnings from Bank of America Corp and Goldman Sachs, while the pound rose after British Prime Minister Theresa May’s government won a confidence vote in parliament.

A share trader starts his trading systems at the start of the trading session the day after the Brexit deal vote of the British parliament at the stock exchange in Frankfurt, Germany, January 16, 2019. REUTERS/Kai Pfaffenbach

May can now try to build consensus on an agreement on Britain’s departure from the European Union. The confidence vote followed the parliamentary defeat of May’s Brexit deal late Tuesday.

Hopes for a softer Brexit, perhaps incorporating the Labour Party’s idea of a customs union, gave some support to the pound.

“Sterling has jumped on the back of this because now we are looking at the possibilities of other parties coming to Theresa May and work with her on the issue of Brexit. The future path will be very much dependent on the promises she makes with cross parties,” Naeem Aslam, chief market analyst at Think Markets UK Ltd in London, wrote in a note following the vote.

Sterling GBP= was last trading at $1.2877, up 0.15 percent on the day.

Stocks held their gains following the vote. MSCI’s gauge of stocks across the globe .MIWD00000PUS gained 0.18 percent.

On Wall Street, results from Bank of America (BAC.N) and Goldman Sachs (GS.N) eased worries about the earnings outlook and helped to support stocks. Bank of America shares were up 7.2 percent while Goldman’s stock was up 9.5 percent.

“It’s still way early, but so far the tone has been good,” said Paul Nolte, portfolio manager at Kingsview Asset Management in Chicago.

“The fact that the banks are a little more sensitive certainly to interest rates and the yield curve and business activity, it gives a decent read on the economy.”

The Dow Jones Industrial Average .DJI rose 141.57 points, or 0.59 percent, to 24,207.16, the S&P 500 .SPX gained 5.8 points, or 0.22 percent, to 2,616.1 and the Nasdaq Composite .IXIC added 10.86 points, or 0.15 percent, to 7,034.69.

Investors also digested a Wall Street Journal report that federal prosecutors are investigating Huawei Technologies, the world’s largest telecommunications equipment maker, for allegedly stealing trade secrets from U.S. businesses and could soon issue an indictment.

The pan-European STOXX 600 index rose 0.54 percent.

The dollar rose against the euro as the euro zone single currency was pushed lower by worries about the zone’s economy, with the euro EUR= down 0.18 percent to $1.1393.

Data this week showed Germany barely escaped a recession in the second half of 2018. On Tuesday, European Central Bank chief Mario Draghi warned the euro zone economy was weaker than anticipated.

U.S. Treasury yields climbed as the confidence vote and stock market gains reduced safety bids on the bond market.

Benchmark 10-year notes US10YT=RR last fell 6/32 in price to yield 2.7272 percent, from 2.708 percent late on Tuesday.

Oil prices also gained, boosted by the U.S. equity market rally and a supply cut agreement by OPEC+.

Brent crude LCOc1 futures rose 68 cents to settle at $61.32 a barrel. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude CLc1 futures rose 20 cents to settle at $52.31 a barrel.

For Reuters Live Markets blog on European and UK stock markets, please click on: [LIVE/]

Additional reporting by Tom Wilson in London; Editing by James Dalgleish and David Gregorio


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