European shares bolstered by strong China data

LONDON Fri Jan 18, 2013 8:05am GMT

LONDON Jan 18 (Reuters) - European shares edged higher on Friday, closing in on multi-month highs after stronger-than-expected Chinese data boosted confidence of a revival in the global economy.

The FTEurofirst 300 was up 0.1 percent at 1,166.58 points by 0802 GMT, in sight of a 2-year high of 1,170.29 points set last week. The EuroSTOXX 50 added 0.3 percent.

Chinese retail sales and industrial output rose more than expected in December, helping fourth quarter economic growth to accelerate for the first time in two years.

The better performance from the world's top metals consumer followed on from stronger U.S. jobs and housing data the previous session and helped boost miners, with the basic resources sector up 0.8 percent.

"We've got good numbers out of China, we had some good number out of U.S. yesterday ... The general sentiment is pretty good," said Neil Marsh, strategist at Newedge.

"There will probably be some phases of consolidation as we go forward, but the markets remain pretty resilient. More people are putting their cash to work now in riskier assets, like equities, and there is no sign of that stopping at the minute."