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Europe: Shares reverse early losses, DAX immune to political worries
[LONDON] European shares quickly recovered from a weaker open on Tuesday as continued faith in the underlying strength of the European economy and a synchronised global expansion overcame negative trading updates, notably in Britain.
The Stoxx 600 benchmark ended up 0.4 per cent with most European bourses and sectors in positive territory.
Germany's DAX rose 0.8 per cent after Chancellor Angela Merkel said she would prefer a new election to minority rule after the failure of talks to form a three-way coalition.
"Financial markets did not really react too much", said Paul Donovan, chief economist at UBS Wealth Management, adding that a snap election was not the most likely option because it would be a lengthy process.
Two veteran allies of Dr Merkel appealed to Germany's parties on Tuesday to strike compromise to form a stable government that could drag Europe's biggest economy out of a political impasse.
Volkswagen was among Germany's top gainers for a second day. The carmaker extended gains made after raising its mid-term outlook on Monday, rising 3 per cent.
ProSiebenSat.1 rose 1.5 per cent after JP Morgan lifted its target price to 45 euros amid continuing speculation that the German broadcaster could become an acquisition target.
Energy group Uniper , meanwhile, ended flat after saying it rejected an 8.05 billion euro (S$12.8 billion) bid from Finland's Fortum. Uniper said the offer significantly undervalued the company.
On the UK market, a number of trading updates triggered sharp falls.
Aggreko, the world's largest listed temporary power provider, slumped 11 per cent as the lingering effect of discounts made to win a contract in Argentina this year clouded third-quarter results.
Melrose fell 5 per cent after reporting difficult market conditions for its Brush business, which manufactures electricity generating equipment.
Other UK companies hit by results announcements included Mediclinic, down 5.8 per cent, with Intertek falling 4.2 per cent, Compass 3.3 per cent and Johnson Matthey 3.4 per cent.
Kingfisher, Europe's largest home improvement retailer, fell as much as 1.8 per cent after reporting a small fall in underlying sales, citing weak performance in France. The stock reversed losses to end up more than 1 percent.
EasyJet was a top performer with a 5.1 per cent gain after it said it was benefiting from the collapse of rivals and from problems at Ryanair.
Altice shares fell 2.7 per cent after Bank of America Merrill Lynch cut its rating on the telecoms and cable group to "neutral" from "buy", with the investment bank citing the impact of lower expectations for the company's French business.