European shares steady, near multi-year highs

LONDON Wed May 14, 2014 3:13am EDT

LONDON May 14 (Reuters) - European stock markets were steady in early trading on Wednesday, hovering near multi-year highs, while Britain's Compass Group outperformed after unveiling a special dividend payout.

The pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 index, which on Tuesday had closed up 0.3 percent near a 6-year high, was flat at 1,368.76 points.

The euro zone's blue-chip Euro STOXX 50 index was also flat at 3,212.33 points while Germany's DAX rose 0.2 percent to 9,771.40 points, putting the DAX back within reach of a record high of 9,794 points reached in January.

Some traders said the rally witnessed over the last two months, which has seen the FTSEurofirst 300 rise some 7 percent from lows in March, may run out of steam as investors look for an opportunity to cash in on that rise.

"For me, it's overdone here, and there's a pullback coming," said Darren Courtney-Cook, head of trading at Central Markets Investment Management. (Reporting by Sudip Kar-Gupta; Editing by Lionel Laurent)

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