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Feb 29, 2012

ECB funding for banks lifts European shares

LONDON (Reuters) – European shares were higher on Wednesday after the ECB provided 530 billion euros ($711 billion) of cheap funding for banks, reinforcing investors’ optimism that more credit will flow to businesses and government borrowing costs will ease further.

The European Central Bank’s Long Term Refinancing Operation (LTRO) has been a major factor behind the rally in European equities since the turn of the year.

Feb 28, 2012

European shares edge up ahead of ECB bank funding

LONDON, Feb 28 (Reuters) – European shares edged up on
Tuesday as investors braced for the next round of the European
Central Bank’s (ECB) injection of cheap cash for banks, a major
factor in driving the market’s rally in 2012.

Strategists said equities will benefit further from the
funding move, and that European stocks exposed to the U.S.
economy may gain. The Dow Jones rose above 13,000 again
after upbeat U.S. consumer confidence data.

Feb 27, 2012

Autos drive European shares down on oil price worry

LONDON, Feb 27 (Reuters) – European shares fell on
Monday as investors worried about high oil prices hurting
company earnings and global growth, and as the Group of 20
leading economies told Europe it must commit more money to fight
the debt crisis before seeking their help.

At 0944 GMT, the FTSEurofirst 300 index of top
European shares was down 0.8 percent at 1,068.54 points. The
index, which hit a seven-month high last week is still up 6.7
percent this year but is in danger of falling below a key
technical level of 1,061.6, the 61.8 percent retracement of its
fall from a 2011 high hit in February, to a low in September.

Feb 24, 2012

European shares rise as results reassure investors

LONDON (Reuters) – European shares edged up on Friday as results from companies such as Telecom Italia (TLIT.MI: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) reassured investors, and strategists said stocks might extend the rally after hitting seven-month highs this week.

Telecom Italia rose 5.6 percent after the company posted increased earnings, though it slashed its dividend to help reduce a debt pile of more than 30 billion euros. Trading volumes on the stock were twice the 90-day daily average before midday.

Feb 22, 2012

European shares slip on euro zone recession worries

LONDON, Feb 22 (Reuters) – European share prices
slipped further from their recent seven-month high as downbeat
economic data from the euro zone fuelled worries about
recession, and concern continued about Greece even after it
secured a bailout.

By 0958 GMT on Wednesday the FTSEurofirst 300 index
of top European shares was down 0.6 percent at 1,079.31 points.
Yet the index is up more than 26 percent from a 2011 low, hit in
September, and reached its highest since July earlier in the
week.

Feb 21, 2012

European shares slip from highs after Greek bailout

LONDON, Feb 21 (Reuters) – European shares slipped
from near seven-month highs on Tuesday, with strategists saying
the focus would now turn to the bleak outlook for Greece’s
economy after the country secured a second bailout and averted a
messy default.

Euro zone finance ministers sealed a 130 billion euro ($172
billion) deal for Greece on Tuesday to avert a chaotic default
in March after persuading private bondholders to take greater
losses and Athens to commit to deep cuts.

Feb 17, 2012

Greek bailout optimism boosts European shares

LONDON (Reuters) – European shares rose to their highest in more than six months on Friday, on optimism that euro zone officials would sign off a rescue package for Greece, helping the country to avoid a messy default.

Greek officials say they have done everything asked of them for euro zone finance ministers to agree the 130 billion euro ($170 billion) rescue package on Monday — a month before Athens needs the money to make 14.5 billion euros of debt repayments due on March 20.

Feb 14, 2012

European shares slip on US retail sales

LONDON, Feb 14 (Reuters) – European shares fell on
Tuesday, after weaker-than-expected U.S. retail sales cast doubt
on the strength of the recovery in the world’s biggest economy,
and after Moody’s downgraded six euro zone countries.

Losses were limited, however, by a rise in the ZEW index of
German economic sentiment to a level not seen since April.

Feb 13, 2012

European shares rise on Greek austerity bill vote

LONDON (Reuters) – European shares rose on Monday after Greece’s parliament approved at the weekend the deeply unpopular austerity bill needed to secure the next EU/IMF rescue package and avoid a messy default on its debts.

Greek banks were the standout gainers, up 12.3 percent, and are up more than 86 percent in 2012. The wider STOXX Europe 600 Banking Index rose 1.1 percent. Much of the sector is exposed to the debts of the struggling countries of the euro zone periphery, and strategists are becoming slowly more confident that the crisis in the region is being contained.

Feb 10, 2012

Euro zone banks lead European shares lower

LONDON (Reuters) – European shares fell on Friday, dragged lower by banks on concerns about the outcome of the euro zone debt crisis after finance ministers imposed further conditions before approving a rescue package for Greece.

Greek political leaders said they had clinched a deal on economic reforms needed to secure a second EU bailout, but euro zone finance ministers demanded more steps and a parliamentary seal of approval before providing the aid.