By Ovunc Kutlu
ANKARA (AA) - European stock markets closed higher on Thursday to finish the session strong after key interest rate decisions in the UK and the EU.
The STOXX Europe 600, which includes around 90% of the market capitalization of the European market in 17 countries, rose 5.8 points, or 1.23%, to 476.56.
London's FTSE 100 gained almost 90 points, or 1.25%, to end at 7,260 after the Bank of England (BoE) earlier increased interest rates by 0.15 percentage points to 0.25% – the first hike in more than three years.
The European Central Bank (ECB), on the other hand, kept interest rates unchanged, and confirmed that it will end the pandemic emergency purchase program by the end of March.
Germany's DAX 30 gained 160 points, or 1.03%, to close at 15,636, while France's CAC 40 rose 77 points, or 1.12%, to 7,005.
Italy's FTSE MIB 30 increased 116 points, or 0.44%, to end the day at 26,782.
Spain's IBEX 35 was the best performer of the day, gaining 105 points, or 1.27%, to finish at 8,380.