European Stocks Higher as Georgia Runoffs Point Democrat Sweep of Congress

 European stock markets pushed higher Wednesday, with investors keeping a watchful eye on U.S. political developments as well as the progress of the coronavirus pandemic. At 3:35 AM ET, the DAX in Germany traded 0.2% higher, the CAC 40 in France rose 0.2% and the U.K.’s FTSE index climbed 0.8%.

U.S. TV networks called one of the runoffs for Georgia’s two seats in the U.S. Senate for Democrat Raphael Warnock, while election prediction services such as Decision Desk HQ indicated that Jon Ossoff was also on course to unseat Republican David Perdue. The results are expected to be announced later Wednesday. These votes are seen as crucial in deciding whether President-elect Joe Biden enjoys full control of Congress or faces stiff opposition to his plans.

A win for the Democrat pair would likely result in more stimulus and tax hikes as well as greater corporate regulation. However, a win for either or both of the incumbent Republican candidates would mean a much more difficult path for Biden’s agenda.

Back in Europe, the European Medicines Agency is expected to give its assessment of Moderna’s coronavirus vaccine later Wednesday.

A new strain of the Covid-19 virus has forced the U.K. to enter another national lockdown earlier this week, while Germany on Tuesday extended its own lockdown until Jan. 31.