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European stocks rise on ECB easing hopes; Dax up 0.26%

Published 09/03/2014, 03:34 AM
Frankfurt Stock Exchange
UK100
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FCHI
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DE40
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STOXX50
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HSBA
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BARC
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LLOY
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NWG
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DBKGn
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BNPP
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LVMH
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SOGN
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BBVA
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SAN
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UTDI
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NXGN
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RIO
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BHPB
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RRS
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ISP
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CRDI
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HRMS
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ESM24
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1YMM24
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NQM24
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FRES
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Investing.com - European stocks were higher on Wednesday, as growing expectations that the European Central Bank could announced additional easing measures continued to support.

During European morning trade, the DJ Euro Stoxx 50 climbed 0.57%, France’s CAC 40 gained 0.50%, while Germany’s DAX added 0.26%.

European equities remained supported amid mounting expectations that the ECB will announce quantitative easing measures as a way to shore up growth after the annual rate of euro area inflation slowed to a five year low last month.

Earlier Wednesday, Markit research group said that Spain's services purchasing managers' index rose to a six-and-a-half year high of 58.1 last month, from a reading of 56.2 in July, beating expectations for a decline to 55.1.

Meanwhile, investors continued to monitor developments in Ukraine, as U.S. President Barack Obama arrived in Estonia to hold talks with Baltic leaders on the Ukraine crisis.

Nato recently announced plans to set up a rapid-response force to protect Eastern European countries against possible Russian aggression.

Financial stocks were broadly higher, as French lenders BNP Paribas (PARIS:BNPP) and Societe Generale (PARIS:SOGN) jumped 1.18% and 1%, while Germany's Deutsche Bank (XETRA:DBKGn) gained 0.67%.

Among peripheral lenders, Italy's Unicredit (MILAN:CRDI) and Intesa Sanpaolo (MILAN:ISP) rallied 1.23% and 1.90% respectively, while Spanish banks Banco Santander (MADRID:SAN) and BBVA (MADRID:BBVA) advanced 0.75% and 0.81%.

Elsewhere, LVMH (PARIS:LVMH) surged 2.93% amid reports the French luxury goods company plans to distribute its stake in rival Hermes International (PARIS:HRMS) to its shareholders.

German Web-access provider United Internet (XETRA:UTDI) added to gains, up 2.42% after agreeing to buy full control of fiber-optic network operator Versatel GmbH for €586 million.

In London, FTSE 100 gained 0.45%, as U.K. lenders tracked their European counterparts higher.

Shares in Lloyds Banking (LONDON:LLOY) climbed 0.65% and the Royal Bank of Scotland (LONDON:RBS) advanced 1%, while HSBC Holdings (LONDON:HSBA) and Barclays (LONDON:BARC) rallied 1.31% and 1.37% respectively.

ICAP (LONDON:IAP) was also on the upside, with shares rising 0.37% amid reports the world's biggest broker of transactions between banks is seeking to sell its Brazil business serving individuals.

In the mining sector, stocks were broadly lower. Randgold Resources (LONDON:RRS) saw shares drop 0.74% and Rio Tinto (LONDON:RIO) declined 0.76%, while Fresnillo (LONDON:FRES) tumbled 1.42% and Bhp Billiton (LONDON:BLT) plummeted 2.42%.

In the U.S., equity markets pointed to a higher open. The Dow 30 futures pointed to a 0.19% increase, S&P 500 futures signaled a 0.17% rise, while the Nasdaq 100 futures indicated a 0.15% gain.

Later in the day, the euro zone was to release data on retail sales, while the U.S. was to publish data on factory orders.

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