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European Shares Broadly Higher Ahead Of Central Bank Meetings

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European stocks were broadly higher on Wednesday as investors shrugged off trade worries and looked ahead to meetings from the European Central Bank and Bank of England on Thursday for directional cues.

Global financial system is now better prepared to face another crisis, if and when it occurs, Chair of the Supervisory Board of the European Central Bank Daniele Nouy told the French newspaper Les Echos during an interview, the text of which was published today on the ECB website.

The pan-European Stoxx Europe 600 index was up 0.25 percent at 376.23 in late opening deals after closing little changed with a negative bias the previous day.

The German DAX was rising 0.2 percent and France's CAC 40 index was gaining half a percent, while the U.K.'s FTSE 100 was down 0.2 percent, hit by a profit warning by energy utility SSE and the pound's recent gains on hopes for a Brexit deal.

Oil giant BP Plc rose half a percent and Tullow Oil rallied 2 percent as oil extended overnight gains on falling U.S. crude inventories.

Mining stocks also traded higher, with Antofagasta, BHP Billiton and Anglo American rising between 0.3 percent and 0.7 percent. Commodities trader Glencore jumped 1.8 percent.

Sports Direct International climbed 3.5 percent. The British retailer said it expects to achieve between a 5 percent and 15 percent improvement in underlying EBITDA for the current financial year, excluding the acquisition of House of Fraser.

Spanish clothing company Inditex jumped 2.8 percent as it reported a 3 percent rise in first-half profit and a rise in gross margin despite a stronger euro.

French handbag maker Hermes International advanced 2.3 percent after posting record first-half earnings.

Belgo-Dutch pharmaceutical research firm Galapagos soared 15 percent after the company reported positive trial results for its filgotinib drug.

Swedish chemicals company Hexpol jumped 5.4 percent after announcing the acquisition of a U.S. firm.

Energy provider SSE lost almost 8 percent in London after a warning that its profits for the first six months of the year would be half compared with last year.

German utility E.ON tumbled 3.7 percent after Morgan Stanley analysts cut their target price on the stock.

In economic releases, Eurozone industrial production decreased for the second straight month in July, Eurostat reported.

Industrial output slid 0.8 percent month-on-month in July, the same pace of decline as seen in June. Economists had forecast a moderate drop of 0.5 percent.

by RTTNews Staff Writer

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