European shares open higher, boosted by Electrolux

LONDON Wed Dec 18, 2013 3:24am EST

LONDON Dec 18 (Reuters) - European shares opened higher on Wednesday, boosted by Swedish home appliances maker Electrolux after strong U.S. deliveries data, and by expectations of a bullish reading for a German economic sentiment indicator.

The market was betting the Ifo business morale survey, due to be published at 0900 GMT, would come in strong a day after the ZEW gauge of German analyst and investor sentiment beat forecasts.

But many investors were reluctant to make large directional bets ahead of an announcement from the U.S. Federal Reserve on its equity-friendly stimulus programme at 1900 GMT.

"We're expecting (the Ifo to be) similar to the ZEW index, with the economy on a strong note," Markus Huber, senior sales trader at Peregrine & Black, said.

"We're going slightly long (European indexes) into the data and the Fed but, as always with these big decisions, we would never be fully positioned."

The FTSEurofirst 300 was up 0.5 percent at 1,254.46 points at 0808 GMT while Germany's Dax was up 0.6 percent.

Shares in Electrolux rose 4 percent, among the top gainers on the pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 index after data showed deliveries of the six biggest categories of white goods in the United States rose 21.4 percent year-on-year in November.