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Europe: Shares steady, Ahold and Delhaize rise sharply

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European shares held steady on Wednesday, with supermarket groups Ahold and Delhaize advancing after media reports suggesting merger talks between the two could come to a successful conclusion as early as June.

[LONDON] European shares held steady on Wednesday, with supermarket groups Ahold and Delhaize advancing after media reports suggesting merger talks between the two could come to a successful conclusion as early as June.

Shares in Ahold and Delhaize rose 2.6 per cent and 5.1 per cent respectively. The two companies are in talks to create a top 20 global retailer with a major presence in the United States. A deal would see a combined retailer worth around 23 billion euros.

The pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 index was little changed at 1,572.00 points by 0724 GMT after falling in the previous session.

Investors will also focus on Greece's debt talks and a policy meeting of the European Central Bank later in the day.

sentifi.com

Market voices on:

Greece's creditors on Tuesday drafted the broad lines of an agreement to put to the leftist government in Athens in a bid to conclude four months of acrimonious negotiations and release aid before the cash-strapped country runs out of money.

REUTERS

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