- Asian and European shares are higher as markets enjoy a break from a global sell-off that has been going on for about two weeks.
- However, there are doubts about the sustainability of today's stock gains.
- "Opinions remain divided on whether this week's rally is anything more than a 'dead cat bounce'," say forex analysts at BNP Paribas. "Friday's job report will likely be key to resolving the debate, at least for the rest of the month."
- The Nikkei recovers from some of its sharp losses from the previous few sessions, rising 1.2% following strong earnings reports from Panasonic, Sony and Hitachi.
- Elsewhere in Asia, the Hang Seng is -0.9% and India's Sensex is +0.2%, while China remains closed for the Lunar New Year.
- In Europe, PMI surveys continue to be encouraging, although shares were already higher before the data was released.
- Euro Stoxx 50 +0.2%, London +0.4%, Paris +0.3%, Frankfurt +0.2%, Madrid +0.6%, Milan +0.7%.
- U.S. stock futures: Dow, S&P and Nasdaq flat.