China data lifts European shares; commodities gain

LONDON, Sept 29 Wed Sep 29, 2010 3:14am EDT

LONDON, Sept 29 (Reuters) - European shares rose on Wednesday after falling for the previous two-sessions as pleasing China PMI figures lifted sentiment, with commodity stocks given a boost by the news.

By 0712 GMT, the pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 .FTEU3 index of top shares was 0.8 percent higher at 1,078.97 points after falling 0.3 percent on Tuesday when data showed U.S. consumer confidence dropped to its lowest level since February.

"The markets look to be going higher," Ben Critchley, sales trader at IG Index. "The China PMI news is helping it and will be a boost for the miners."

The HSBC's China Purchasing Managers' Index rose to a five-month high in September, while separately top iron ore miner Vale said steel demand growth in China, will revive by early 2011. [ID:nTOE68S046] [ID:nTOE68S03T]

Miners were in demand, with Antofagasta (ANTO.L), Rio Tinto (RIO.L) and Xstrata XTA.L gaining 0.6 to 0.8 percent, while oil groups BP (BP.L), Total (TOTF.PA) and BG Group (BG.L) rose 0.5 to 1.7 percent.

However, retailers were on the downside. Swedish fashion group Hennes & Mauritz (HMb.ST) slipped 5.2 percent after its third-quarter profit missed forecasts. [ID:nLDE68R0V0] (Reporting by Joanne Frearson)

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