European shares rebound sharply; miners soar

* FTSEurofirst 300 index rebounds to close up 2.4 percent

* Miners soar on higher metals, Australia tax hopes

* U.S. data boosts optimism

By Brian Gorman

LONDON, May 26 (BestGrowthStock) – European shares almost recovered
the previous session’s losses on Wednesday in a broad market
rebound with miners notching up strong gains.

The pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 (.FTEU3: ) index of top
shares rose 2.4 percent to close at 972.17 points, after falling
2.4 percent in the previous session to its lowest close since
September.

The rebound “was to be expected given how far things have
fallen,” said Andy Lynch, fund manager at Schroders. “It will
remain difficult for markets, as there’s too much debt around.”

The FTSEurofirst 300 is still down more than 12 percent from
a mid-April peak on worries over Europe’s debt crisis.

Mining companies Anglo American (AAL.L: ), Antofagasta
(ANTO.L: ), BHP Billiton (BLT.L: ), Rio Tinto (RIO.L: ), Lonmin
(LMI.L: ) and Xstrata (XTA.L: ) rose strongly, helped by a report
the Australian government will dampen the impact of its proposed
super tax on resource companies. [ID:nLDE64P228]

Rio gained 7.3 percent.
<^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
Graph on stock performance in 2010:
http://graphics.thomsonreuters.com/10/GLB_PRFE0510.html
Latest wrapup on the euro zone debt crisis: [ID:nSGE64P04M]
Graphic on the euro zone debt: http://link.reuters.com/fyw72j
Global investing blog:
http://blogs.reuters.com/globalinvesting/
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CONFIDENCE BOOST

Crude futures (CLc1: ) also surged, up more than 3 percent
even as data showed U.S. inventories rising, and the euro fell (Read more about the trembling euro. )
for a third straight session against the dollar, still pressured
by fears Europe’s debt crisis could hurt global growth.

Energy companies to gain included Total (TOTF.PA: ), BP
(BP.L: ), BG (BG.L: ), Repsol (REP.MC: ) and StatoilHydro (STL.OL: ), up
between 1.4 and 3.4 percent.

U.S. economic data helped boost confidence. New home sales
surged to their highest level in nearly two years in April,
while orders for long-lasting manufactured goods rose sharply,
pointing to resilience in the economic recovery. [ID:nN26186476]

“The data seems to be saying that the world is doing okay at
the moment, but so it ought to be with the amount of stimulus
that’s being thrown at it,” said Lynch.

Across Europe, Britain’s FTSE 100 (.FTSE: ), Germany’s DAX
(.GDAXI: ) and France’s CAC 40 (.FCHI: ) ended the day between 1.6
and 2.3 percent higher.

On Wall Street the Dow Jones (.DJI: ), S&P 500 (.SPX: ) and
Nasdaq Composite (.IXIC: ) were up between 0.9 and 1.6 percent at
around the time European bourses were closing.

The STOXX Europe 600 banking index (.SX7P: ) was up 2 percent
after falling 3.7 percent in the previous session. Bank of
Ireland (BKIR.I: ), Allied Irish Banks (ALBK.I: ) and Barclays
(BARC.L: ) rose between 4.7 and 10.5 percent.

Lloyds Banking Group (LLOY.L: ) and Royal Bank of Scotland
(RBS.L: ) were also given a boost from upgrades by Credit Suisse
and gained 6.7 percent and 5.6 percent respectively.
Among individual stocks, Portugal Telecom (PTC.LS) jumped 6
percent after a Telefonica (TEF.MC: ) executive threatened a
hostile bid for the Portuguese company. [ID:nLDE64P0DO]

Stock Analysis

(Editing by David Holmes)

European shares rebound sharply; miners soar