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Morning Market Update: Chinese GDP

Global markets finished the week on a soft note on Friday night, with major indices on both sides of the Atlantic little changed after a solid week.

European stocks posted their biggest weekly gain in two months amid optimism that central banks from the U.S. to Japan will continue their stimulus measures.

On Friday night, European stocks were little changed from a five-week high, as investors awaited U.S. earnings out this week. The Stoxx 600 Index rose 2.7% to settle at 296 for the week.

In London, the FTSE 100 was barely changed, adding just two points to close at 6545. The German DAX added 54 points (+0.7%) to finish trading at 8213.

U.S. stocks rose for the seventh session running, extending a record for the S&P 500 on the back of better than estimated bank earnings.

The S&P 500 advanced by five points (+0.3%) to a record 1680, while the blue-chip Dow Jones added three points (+0.1%) to settle at 15464, also an all-time high.

Gold fell as a stronger U.S. dollar curbed demand for an alternative investment, narrowing the biggest weekly gain since October 2011, after Fed Chairman Bernanke called for maintaining stimulus. Bullion for August delivery slipped 0.2% to settle at $1,277.60 an ounce on the Comex in New York.

Crude oil climbed on speculation that U.S. inventories will keep declining after the largest two-week drop in at least three decades. Crude for August delivery advanced $1.04 to settle at $105.95 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

The Australian Bureau of Statistics will release its monthly New Motor Vehicle Sales report at 11:30 am today.

Morning Market Update: Chinese GDP is a post from: Australian Stock Report Market Pulse Blog