Investors Monitor US Coronavirus Cases, Hopes for Recovery

European markets advanced on Friday morning despite rising cases of coronavirus in the US and additional warnings about a second market crash from the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

The pan-European Stoxx 600 rose 0.6% in initial trade, with tech stocks adding 1.2% to lead gains as all sectors and major markets entered positive territory.

The rebound in the global market could be proven by a feared escalation of coronavirus infections in the US, with Texas halting the reopening of its economy after another record-breaking daily rise in new cases and hospitalizations.

As of Friday morning, the United States has more than 2.4 million confirmed cases and more than 124,000 deaths, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University. However, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said Thursday that the actual number of infections could be 10 times higher than the official count.

Localized restrictions have also been re-imposed in parts of the Portuguese capital Lisbon, western Germany, Beijing and the state of Victoria in Australia.

The IMF warned on Thursday that the shares could collapse in the event of another global spike in infections, the reintroduction of blocking measures or an escalation in trade tensions.

It has been a great week for corporate news in Europe. Wirecard filed for insolvency on Thursday, unable to account for a $ 2.1 billion black hole in its balance sheet and owing $ 4 billion to creditors. Shares of the German payments company fell another 40% at the beginning of the session on Friday to trade at just 2.1 euros per share ($ 2.35 per share).

Lufthansa shareholders backed a $ 10 billion German government rescue package on Thursday to rescue the distressed operator after major shareholder Heinz Hermann Thiele abandoned his opposition to the plan.

Meanwhile, Reuters reported Thursday night that the Dutch government has agreed to a € 3.4 billion bailout agreement with France for Air France-KLM, as airlines continue to falter after months of travel restrictions around the world.

AMS was the biggest winner in early trading on Friday, rising 6% after the Austrian chipmaker denied insider allegations reported by German newspaper Handelsblatt.

Spanish retail sales data and confidence readings for French and Italian consumers are expected on Friday morning.