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European Shares Seen Up As Catalan Worries Ease

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European stocks may open higher on Wednesday, with higher commodity prices and easing worries over Catalonian independence likely to support underlying sentiment.

Copper hovered near four-week high amid expectations of potential shortages in China while oil extended gains after rising about 2 percent on Tuesday amid signs that markets are gradually tightening after years of oversupply.

The dollar wobbled against its peers as the tax reform faced major obstacles. Asian stocks advanced broadly and the euro surged after Catalan leader Carles Puigdemont refrained from making a formal declaration of the region's independence on Tuesday.

Gold prices rose for a fourth day after reports that North Korean hackers have stolen top-secret US-South Korea military documents. Investors also braced for the Fed minutes from September's policy meeting due later today.

The International Monetary Fund on Tuesday raised its forecast for global growth to 3.6 percent this year and 3.7 percent in 2018, but cut U.K. and U.S. growth forecasts.

Separately, China is on track to meeting its growth target of around 6.5 percent this year, and could well exceed it, the head of the Statistics Bureau said on Tuesday.

Overnight, U.S. stocks rose, led by energy stocks and retailers as oil prices rallied and Wal-Mart unveiled a $20 bln share buyback plan. The Dow and the Nasdaq Composite rose 0.3 percent and 0.1 percent, respectively to end at fresh record closing highs, while the S&P 500 added 0.2 percent.

European markets ended Tuesday's session mostly lower as the euro advanced and investors awaited a key address from Catalan independence leader Carles Puigdemont.

The pan-European Stoxx Europe 600 index ended flat with a negative bias. The U.K.'s FTSE 100 rose by 0.4 percent, while the German DAX slid 0.2 percent and France's CAC 40 index closed marginally lower.

by RTT Staff Writer

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