A meeting of Greek political leaders to discuss a 130 billion euro bailout has been postponed until tonight.
Elsewhere, in testimony to the Senate Banking Committee, US Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke has pledged to the support the US economy from problems in Europe: ´´we will continue to monitor the situation closely and take every available step to protect the U.S. financial system and the economy.´´
In Europe the FTSE shed two points to settle at 5890, whilst the CAC added 0.2% and the DAX shed 0.2%.
Stateside, the Dow Jones added 33 points (+0.3%) to settle at 12878, whilst the S&P (+0.2%) and Nasdaq (+0.1%) also enjoyed modest gains.
The Aussie dollar rallied overnight, moving past the US$1.08 handle, whilst the euro rose to its highest level in eight weeks against the greenback as Greek officials and creditors worked on the final draft of an agreement on budget and structural measures needed to free up a second aid package.
Oil added 1.5% to US$98.41 a barrel after the US Energy Information Administration raised its 2012 world oil demand forecast.
Base metal prices were mixed; copper shed 0.2% and zinc lost 0.4% but tin added 4.1%. Gold advanced, adding 1.5% to settle at US$1,749 an ounce.
In company news, BHP has reported a 5.5% drop in half year profit to just over $9 billion dollars, with the result falling just shy of analyst estimates.
Today’s session will bring us data in the form of consumer sentiment figures for February, whilst earnings are expected from BHP Billiton, Boral and Ansell.