Europe’s benchmark stock index rallied the most in three weeks on Monday, as investors latched on to hopes central banks will launch more stimulus soon.
The Stoxx Europe 600 index jumped 3% to close at 321.76, its largest one-day percentage gain since Jan. 22.
Shares of Unipol Gruppo Finanziario SpA jumped 7.7%, Banco Popolare climbed 7.3%, Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena SpA rose 9.2%, and Banca Popolare di Milano Scarl gained 5.7%.
Other banks also jumped, with shares of Eurobank Ergasias SA up 30% in Athens and Credit Suisse Group AG rising 2.7%.
The Stoxx Europe 600 banks index rose 3.5%, trimming its year-to-date slump to 22%.
Trading volume was lighter than usual, as normal U.S. trading is closed for the President’s Day holiday.
Other movers: Shares of H&M Hennes & Mauritz AB advanced 3.5% after the Swedish clothing retailer said total sales rose 7% in January.
Reckitt Benckiser Group PLC rallied 6.8% after the consumer-goods company beat its 2015 target and raised its dividend 12%.
HSBC Holdings PLC moved 1.4% higher after the global bank decided to keep its headquarters in London.
Precious-metals miners topped the list of decliners in Europe, tracking a slide in gold and silver prices. Gold scored its biggest weekly gain since the 2008 financial crisis last week as investors flocked to safe haven investments on the back of a brutal week for equities and oil.
Shares of Fresnillo PLC gave up 2.6%, and Randgold Resources Ltd fell 2%.
Electricite de France SA lost 1.3% after French newspaper Le Figaro said the utility company on Tuesday will report a slump in net profit.