LONDON (Reuters) - Global shares were on track to post their longest winning run in five months as they rose for a sixth straight day on Wednesday, boosted by upbeat trade data from China and a U.S. House deal extending the federal borrowing authority.
Chinese exports and imports outperformed expectations in January by a wide margin, easing fears that the world's second largest economy is mired in a worsening slowdown and reviving appetite for emerging market assets that had been battered in recent weeks.
The cheer spread to Europe, one of China's largest trading partners, where the FTSEurofirst 300 index rose 0.6 percent. Mini futures on the S&P 500 index were pointing to a flat start on Wall Street after Tuesday's rally.
MSCI's index of emerging market stocks added 0.9 percent, extending its bounce from five-month lows hit earlier this month. The Australian dollar rose to a one-month high on the prospect of stronger demand from China, Australia's largest export market.
The broader MSCI All-Country World Index was up 0.3 percent in its longest winning streak since September.
"Our analysis suggests that emerging market equities are discounting an outcome substantially below current consensus forecasts, so of course a better-than-expected outcome is going to help the case," said Ian Scott, a global equity strategist at Barclays in London.
Investors also took heart from a strong share market performance in the United States, where Congress agreed to advance legislation extending U.S. borrowing authority and the Federal Reserve's new chief pledged to keep interest rates at ultra-low levels for longer.
By contrast, the Bank of England indicated that interest rates may need to rise in just over a year and raised its growth
forecasts, sending the pound up against the dollar and the euro.
"Recovery (in Britain) has gained momentum," said Neil Jones, head of hedge fund FX sales at Mizuho. "The market likes this and is starting to reinvest the pound sold off in January."
A speech by European Central Bank President Mario Draghi will also be in the spotlight on Wednesday.
The calmer mood in markets was reflected in the VSTOXX index of euro zone equity volatility falling for a sixth day to lows not seen since late January.
Among commodities, spot gold snapped a three-day winning streak, giving back some of its sharp overnight gains as stocks rallied. But it was still not far from a three-month high of $1,293.44 hit on Tuesday.
Brent crude edged higher toward $109 a barrel and London copper climbed, reversing losses from the previous session and moving away from a two-month low of $7,016 touched on February 4.
Additional reporting by Patrick Graham, Lisa Twaronite, Wayne Cole, Shao Xiaoyi and Koh Gui Qing; Editing by Gareth Jones