U.S. Fed drives European shares up; techs rise

* FTSEurofirst 300 index gains 1 percent

* Tech shares given a boost by Intel; ASML on results

* Standard Chartered slips on right issue

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

By Joanne Frearson

LONDON, Oct 13 (BestGrowthStock) – European shares touched a
three-week high on Wednesday, after the minutes of the U.S.
Federal Reserve suggested it was closer to introducing fresh
stimuli to the economy.

Technology shares featured among the top performers after
Intel (INTC.O: ), the world’s largest chipmaker, forecast strong
fourth-quarter sales and margins.

Profit beating results from Dutch chip-equipment maker ASML
(ASML.AS: ), which has Intel as one of its biggest customers also
buoyed sentiment in the sector. ASML rose 2.5 percent, while
semiconductor peers ARM Holdings (ARM.L: ), Infineon (IFXGn.DE: )
and STMicroelectronics (STM.PA: ) gained 1.7 to 3.4 percent.

By 0853 GMT, the pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 (.FTEU3: )
index of top shares was 1 percent higher at 1,082.26 points
after being up as much as 1,083.23 – its highest level in three
weeks.

The Euro STOXX 50 (.STOXX50E: ), the euro zone’s blue-chip
index, rose 1.5 percent to 2,816.63 points, jumping above the
61.8 percent Fibonacci retracement level of the index’s fall
from an April high to a May low at 2,805.95 points after being
below it for the previous three sessions.

“As long as corporate results beat expectations the markets
will go higher,” Ben Critchley, a sales trader at IG Index said.

“But, now the question is how the Fed is going to do
quantitative easing, is it going to be all in one big shot or
month by month.”

Minutes of the Fed’s Sept. 21 meeting, released on Tuesday
after European markets closed, showed officials thought the
struggling U.S. recovery might soon need more help and they
discussed several ways to provide it, including possible
adoption of a price-level target and buying more longer-term
U.S. government debt. [ID:nN12188145]

Speaking in New York late on Tuesday, ECB Governing Council
member Axel Weber said “a normalisation of key interest rates
could in principle start before the phasing out of non-standard
measures has been finished.” [ID:nN12121001]

FRESNILLO GAINS

Miners were in demand as metal prices gained on expectations
of U.S. stimulus measures. Mexican precious metals miner
Fresnillo (FRES.L: ) rose 3.7 percent after it said its silver and
gold production rose to a record in the third quarter.
[ID:nLDE69C06R]

European oil services firms rallied after Washington lifted
its ban on deepwater drilling seven weeks ahead of schedule.

CGG Veritas (GEPH.PA: ), TGS Nopec (TGS.OL: ), Petroleum
Geo-Services (PGS.OL: ), Petrofac (PFC.L: ), Seadrill (SDRL.OL: ),
Transocean (RIGN.VX: ) and Technip (TECF.PA: ) were 2.2 percent to
10.7 percent.

“This is an excellent news for the sector, especially for
CGG Veritas stock which has lost 40 percent over the last six
months,” a Paris-based trader said.

However, Standard Chartered (STAN.L: ) slipped 3.3 percent
after it said it planned to raise 3.3 billion pounds ($5.3
billion) through a rights offering to raise its capital adequacy
ratio.

Barclays (BARC.L: ) was also pressured, down 3 percent, on the
back of its rival’s rights issue, with three traders saying the
bank may need to raise 7 billion to 8 billion pounds based on
what StanChart have done.

Valuations on the STOXX Europe 600 (.STOXX: ) looked cheap.
Its one-year forward price-to-earnings stood at about 10.32
against a 10-year average of 13.51, Thomson Reuters Datastream
showed.

Across Europe, the FTSE 100 (.FTSE: ) index was 1.2 percent
higher, Germany’s DAX (.GDAXI: ) was up 1.4 percent and France’s
CAC 40 (.FCHI: ) rose 1.5 percent.
(Reporting by Joanne Frearson; Editing by Karen Foster)

U.S. Fed drives European shares up; techs rise