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LONDON: European stock markets opened higher Friday, with investors encouraged by a strong start to the US earnings season.

In initial trade, London's benchmark FTSE 100 index won 0.4 percent to 7,234.69 points, compared with Thursday's close.

In the eurozone, the Paris CAC 40 added 0.5 percent to 6,720.72 points and Frankfurt's DAX rose 0.1 percent to 15,484.79.

"The US earnings seasons unfolding has set a very positive tone so far," said AvaTrade analyst Naeem Aslam.

European stocks extend losses, SAP shines after forecast lift

"We have seen really healthy numbers out of the US banking sector this week. The remaining Wall Street giants will report their earnings today."

Asian equities extended gains Friday as traders also cheered better-than-expected data indicating the US recovery remains on track -- despite concerns over elevated inflation and the imminent end to cheap cash.

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