European shares edge higher; payrolls figures eyed

* FTSEurofirst 300 rises 0.4 pct

* Deutsche Boerse up on Russia alliance talk

* For up-to-the-minute market news, click on [STXNEWS/EU]

By Brian Gorman

LONDON, Dec 3 (BestGrowthStock) – European shares edged up early on
Friday after strong gains in the previous two sessions, with the
European Central Bank said to be buying more bonds to combat the
euro zone debt crisis. [ID:nLDE6B20AX]

The market will look for direction later in the session from
the U.S. monthly non-farm payrolls report.

At 0956 GMT, the FTSEurofirst 300 (.FTEU3: ) index of top
European shares was up 0.4 percent at 1,110.69 points, after
rising 3.7 percent over the previous two sessions.

The index is on course to register a 2.2 percent gain for
the week, and is up more than 72 percent from its lifetime low
of March, 2009, helped by stimulus from governments and central
banks worldwide.

“There’s a positive tone to the market, despite all the
negative news on sovereign debt,” said Justin Urquhart Stewart,
director at Seven Investment Management.
“If the payrolls are positive, it could easily push the
market even higher.”

The European Central Bank has been energetic in its
purchases of government bonds this week, ECB Governing Council
member Ewald Nowotny said on Friday. [nFAE005845]

Trading, however, was subdued, especially in London, where
plunging temperatures have made it difficult for some to get to
work, and with some traders reluctant to take big positions
ahead of the labour report.

Miners gained, as metals prices edged up, helped by a weaker
dollar.

Kazakhmys (KAZ.L: ) and Vedanta (VED.L: ) rose 1.4 and 1.9
percent respectively.

Bank of Ireland (BKIR.I: ), one of the banks at the centre of
Ireland’s debt crisis, was a major gainer, up 4.8 percent.
Across Europe, Britain’s FTSE 100 (.FTSE: ), Germany’s DAX
(.GDAXI: ) and France’s CAC40 (.FCHI: ) rose between 0.2 and 0.7
percent.

The Thomson Reuters Peripheral Eurozone Countries Index
(.TRXFLDPIPU: ) was up 0.7 percent.

DEUTSCHE BOERSE GAINS

Deutsche Boerse (DB1Gn.DE: ) rose 1.8 percent on a report that
the stock exchange operator is in talks to form alliances in
Russia, which could include an equity swap. [ID:nLDE6B20HV]

STMicroelectronics (STM.PA: ) rose 4.3 percent, as traders
cited a rating upgrade on the stock by Exane to “outperform”
from “neutral”.

The euro zone’s service sector economy pulled ahead in
November thanks to strengthening German and French business, but
debt-burdened Ireland and Spain continued to lag behind,
business surveys showed on Friday.

The Markit Eurozone Services Purchasing Managers Index
(PMI), which surveys more than 2,000 businesses ranging from
banks to hotels, rose in November to 55.4 from 53.3 in October
and beat an earlier flash estimate of 55.2. [ID:nSLA2NE6K0]

The U.S. payrolls data is due at 1330 GMT, with a Reuters
poll putting the number of jobs added at 140,000, compared with
151,000 in October. The unemployment rate is expected to remain
unchanged from October at 9.6 percent.

(Editing by Jane Merriman)

([email protected]; +44 20 7542 9128; Reuters
Messaging: [email protected]))

European shares edge higher; payrolls figures eyed