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European Shares Subdued As Euro Hits Two-week High

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European stocks were flat to slightly lower on Wednesday as the euro surged and investors awaited the release of minutes of the September Federal Reserve policy meeting later today for clues on the rate outlook.

The euro hit a two-week high against the dollar after Catalan leader Carles Puigdemont refrained from making a formal declaration of the region's independence on Tuesday.

The pan-European Stoxx Europe 600 index was marginally lower in late opening deals, giving up early gains.

France's CAC 40 index was declining 0.2 percent and the U.K.'s FTSE 100 was down 0.1 percent, while the German DAX was little changed with a positive bias.

Spain's IBEX index was rallying 1.2 percent, led by banks CaixaBank and Sabadell.

Unilever rose half a percent after launching the €450m buyback of its Dutch preference shares.

German drug delivery devices maker Gerresheimer climbed 2.5 percent after unveiling its third-quarter results.

GEA Group shares jumped as much as 6.6 percent after activist investor Paul Singer bought a stake of just over 3 percent in the food processing machinery firm.

Similarly, Smith & Nephew rallied 3.5 percent after Paul Singer's hedge fund Elliott Management reportedly built a stake in the medical device maker.

Mondi shares plunged 7 percent in London after the company said its annual results would be slightly lower than analysts' expectations.

by RTT Staff Writer

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