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European and Asian markets open year higher

  • Story Highlights
  • European, Asian stock exchanges mostly higher on first trading day of 2009
  • Hang Seng index in Hong Kong shot up 4.55 percent in Friday's trading
  • Analysts expect GDP in the U.S. to fall from 1 percent to 3 percent this year
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(CNN) -- European markets followed Asian exchanges higher on the first trading day of the new year.

London's FTSE 100, the Paris CAC-40 and Frankfurt's DAX were all up more than a percent in mid-afternoon trading Friday.

Earlier the Hang Seng index in Hong Kong shot up 4.55 percent, while Seoul's KOSPI climbed 2.93 percent. The All Ordinaries index in Sydney had dipped about 0.10 percent at closing time.

Tokyo's stock exchange remained closed for the holiday Friday. Japan's benchmark Nikkei index closed Tuesday down 42.1 percent for the year.

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Analysts expect 2009 to bring another bumpy ride for the global economy, with the world's major economies -- the United States, Japan and the European Union "Eurozone" countries -- officially in recession. Video Watch what's being predicted for the Middle East »

U.S. observers say any rally this year will be on shaky ground. Analysts expect GDP to fall anywhere from 1 percent to 3 percent in 2009, with declines of as much as 5 percent in the first half of the year. Modest increases are forecast to begin in June.

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