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European shares off to sluggish start as miners weigh, FTSE up
May 31, 2017 / 7:32 AM / 5 months ago

European shares off to sluggish start as miners weigh, FTSE up

MILAN, May 31 (Reuters) - European shares opened flat on Wednesday, weighed by a fall in mining stocks and lifted by a big rise for Ericsson after an activist investor bought a stake in the telecoms equipment firm.

The broader pan-European STOXX 600 index was down 0.02 percent by 0712 GMT and euro zone blue chips added 0.1 percent. The FTSE rose 0.2 percent, helped by a weaker pound which fell after a new poll showed Britain risks a hung parliament following a June 8 election.

Ericsson rose 4 percent, leading STOXX gainers, after Cevian Capital bought a stake of more than 5 percent, saying it saw significant potential in the Swedish firm.

Cellnex was another strong gainer after a Bloomberg report said that American Tower may bid. Cellnex said its management has had no contact with American Towers.

Top loser was Metro after the German retailer reported results showing a loss at its consumer electronics division.

The Basic Resources index, where major mining companies are listed, was the biggest sectoral faller, dropping 1.4 percent. (Reporting by Danilo Masoni; Editing by Louise Ireland)

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