August 25, 2014 / 7:56 AM / 4 years ago

Expectations of more ECB easing boost European shares

* Euro STOXX 50 index rises 1.1 percent

* Draghi comments raise expectations of more easing

* UK stock market closed due to public holiday

By Atul Prakash

LONDON, Aug 25 (Reuters) - European shares rose in morning trading on Monday, with market sentiment improving after comments by European Central Bank President Mario Draghi raised expectations of further policy easing.

Draghi, speaking at a global central banking conference in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, said late on Friday the bank was prepared to respond with all its “available” tools should inflation drop further.

“The key message is that Draghi stands ready for more action if needed. Whether they’re going to do quantitative easing remains to be seen, but we’re fairly confident that the financial engineers at the ECB will find other tools,” Franz Wenzel, chief strategist at AXA Investment Managers, said.

The euro zone’s blue-chip Euro STOXX 50 index was up 1.1 percent at 3,135.38 points at 0739 GMT after climbing to a three-week high in early deals. Germany’s DAX rose 1.2 percent, while France’s CAC 40 gained 1.1 percent.

Trading volumes were likely to be thin as the UK market was closed for a public holiday. The Euro STOXX 50 index’s trading volumes were just 6 percent of its 90-day daily average in the first hour.

Also at the Jackson Hole conference, Federal Reserve chair Janet Yellen laid out in detail why she felt the unemployment rate alone was inadequate for evaluating the strength of the U.S. jobs market and why the central bank needed to move cautiously on raising rates.

“Overall we think the speech was a balanced assessment of the U.S. labour market, though one can consider it a slight hawkish shift given Yellen’s usual dovish stance,” Credit Agricole said in an early note.

Among individual movers, Airbus rose 1.2 percent after saying it was considering a sale of its 49 percent stake in submarine supplier Atlas Elektronik as part of a reshuffle of its military business, German newspaper Die Welt reported on its website on Friday, citing industry sources. Airbus declined to comment.

Roche Holding shares were up 0.64 percent after it agreed to buy U.S. biotech company InterMune for $8.3 billion in cash.

Europe bourses in 2014:

Asset performance in 2014:

Today’s European research round-up (Additional reporting by Francesco Canepa, editing by John Stonestreet)

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