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European Shares Hold Steady As Banks Surge

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European stocks held steady in cautious trade on Monday despite reports that the European Union is considering hitting U.S. goods with retaliatory tariffs to the tune of 10.2 billion euros ($11.5 billion), escalating a tariff war over disputed aviation subsidies.

The pan European Stoxx 600 was up 0.1 percent at 388 in opening deals after closing up 0.2 percent on Friday.

The German DAX and the U.K.'s FTSE 100 were marginally higher, while France's CAC 40 index was moving up 0.2 percent.

Banks were rallying ahead of quarterly results from a number of big U.S. banks due this week. Commerzbank, BNP Paribas and Deutsche Bank climbed 2-3 percent.

Miners fell on profit taking after recent strong gains. Anglo American dropped 1.2 percent and Antofagasta slipped 0.2 percent.

Rio Tinto lost 1.3 percent after it committed $302 million of additional capital to advance its Resolution Copper project in the US state of Arizona.

Acacia Mining fell 2.3 percent after its gold production for the first-quarter declined 13 percent, mainly due to lower production at North Mara and Buzwagi.

BP Plc declined more than 1 percent as oil prices slipped in volatile trade.

IG Group Holdings rallied 2.6 percent. The multi-platform trading company said that its Chairman, Andy Green, intends to resign as Chairman at the company's AGM in September 2019.

Italian media group Mediaset as well as its German rival ProSiebenSat.1 Media rose around 1 percent each on merger speculation.

French advertising and public relations company Publicis Groupe jumped 3 percent after it agreed to buy digital marketing firm Epsilon from Alliance Data Systems Corp. for $4.4 billion in cash.

Norsk Hydro gained 1 percent after it won further support for its bid to resume full output from its Alunorte alumina refinery in Brazil.

Daimler shed 0.8 percent. The German luxury carmaker denied media reports that it quietly removed emission-test-cheating software from a range of Mercedes GLK 220 CDI diesel models.

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