* Euro STOXX 50 flat at 2,479.82 after late bounce
* Index poised for fresh gains - Trading Central
* FTSEurofirst 300 down 0.05 pct
* Strong U.S. data fuels bounce, counters fiscal cliff
By Francesco Canepa
LONDON, Nov 9 European shares recovered in late
trade on Friday and geared up for fresh gains after a batch of
strong U.S. data injected some optimism about growth in the
world's largest economy and fuelled a technical rebound.
A sharp increase in September U.S. wholesale inventories and
sales, coupled with a rise in consumer sentiment this month,
helped act as a counterweight to persistent concerns around the
outlook for U.S. fiscal policy.
The euro zone blue-chip Euro STOXX 50 index
provisionally closed flat at 2,479.82 points, paring losses
after breaking above a late October low in the 2,467 area.
Concerns about a "fiscal cliff" of automatic tax hikes and
spending cuts worth $600 billion and due to kick in on Jan. 1
had pushed the index 2.7 percent lower in the previous two
"We think that an agreement will be reached and the fiscal
cliff is going to be sized down to $250 billion ," Matthias
Thiel, a strategist at M.M.Warburg & Co in Hamburg said.
"There is a chance the negotiations are going to frighten
the stock market in the short term but in general we think that
a solution should be reached and that's why investors should buy
on those dips."
Thiel expected economic recovery in the United States and
emerging market to help U.S. and core European equities rally
this year and the next, adding he expected Germany's Dax
, which closed down 0.6 percent at 7,163.50 on Friday,
to end 2012 at 7,500-7,600 and 2013 at 8,000.
Charts on the Euro STOXX 50 December futures also
pointed to fresh gains after the contract resumed its ascending
"Prices just bounced off a daily ascending trend line," said
Philippe Delabarre, an analyst at Trading Central.
He also highlighted the contract's intraday Relative
Strength Index, a momentum indicator, pushed above the 50
percent retracement of a fall in the previous two days.
But M.M.Warburg & Co's Thiel warned markets were likely to
be volatile in the coming weeks, arguing a meeting of euro zone
finance ministers on Monday was likely to disappoint the market
by failing to provide any solution to Greece's urgent fiscal
Ministers are unlikely to release a new tranche of loans to
Greece on Monday as there is no agreement yet on how to make its
debt sustainable, but Athens is set to get two more years to cut
debt, officials said.
Uncertainty about Greece's future weighed on euro zone banks
, down 1.3 percent on Friday, which are large holders of
the region's sovereign debt and depend on the health of its
economy and wholesale funding market.
France's Credit Agricole dropped 5.9 percent drop
in volume over twice its average after unveiling $4.6 billion of
writedowns, including on investments in Greece, Italy and Spain.
As risk aversion dominated the day, the healthcare sector
, generally seen as a defensive play, was the best
performer, rising 0.9 percent.
It was boosted by Denmark's Novo Nordisk, which
jumped 7 percent in volume four time the average after an
advisory panel to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration voted to
recommend approval of its long-acting insulin degludec.
Novo Nordisk was the top riser on the pan-European
FTSEurofirst 300 index, which ended the day 0.1 percent
lower at 1,097.18, having hit an intra-day low of 1,086.11