LONDON, March 15 European shares rose on
Wednesday, boosted by strength in basic resource and oil stocks,
while French aeroplane seat-maker Zodiac plummeted after its
latest profit warning.
The pan-European STOXX 600 index gained 0.4 percent
in early deals. Potentially divisive elections and a U.S.
Federal Reserve policy meeting that could signal how much
monetary tightening to expect during the remainder of the year
are events in focus for market participants.
A recovery in oil prices after a sharp sell-off over the
past week spurred a relief rally in basic resources stocks. The
sector index were the top gainers, up 2 percent,
followed by an index of major European oil-related stocks
which rose 1.3 percent.
Oil prices rebounded after a surprise U.S. crude stockpile
drawdown eased worries about a supply glut.
Amec Foster , Wood Group and Tullow Oil
were among the best-performing oil services and oil
producer stocks, up 3 to 3.5 percent.
British drugmaker Hikma was up 7.2 percent after it
posted a rise in full-year operating profit, up 2.4 percent on
growth in its injectables and branded business, which offset
weakness in its generic drugs.
Zodiac fell 12.8 percent, the top European faller,
after it warned on profit after the close on Tuesday. The
company, which engine maker Safran is seeking to acquire, said
it sees full-year operating income falling 10 percent against a
previous forecast of a 10-20 percent rise.
Zara owner Inditex fell 1.8 percent after it posted
a 10 percent rise in profit for 2016. The broader European
retail sector was the worst-performing sector, down 0.7
percent, with Swedish peer H&M also down 4.5 percent.
(Reporting by Helen Reid, Editing by Vikram Subhedar)