World Economy

Europe Stocks Rise

Europe Stocks RiseEurope Stocks Rise

European stocks advanced, snapping a three-day losing streak, as IAG SA rose. IAG climbed 1 percent after getting approval from the Irish government to proceed with its 1.4 billion-euro ($1.53 billion) takeover of Aer Lingus Group Plc. Imperial Tobacco Group Plc added 1.6 percent after the Federal Trade Commission accepted Reynolds American Inc.’s proposal to sell its Winston, Kool, Salem and Maverick brands to the UK company, Bloomberg reported.

The Stoxx Europe 600 Index added 0.3 percent to 404.68 at 9:19 a.m. in London, after earlier rising as much as 0.5 percent. Shares capped their longest streak of losses in three weeks Tuesday as US data and comments by Federal Reserve officials stoked concern of a rate increase. The equity benchmark gauge has increased 18 percent this year, helped by the European Central Bank’s quantitative-easing program.

“The decline in European stocks was far too steep,” said Pierre Mouton, who helps oversee $8.3 billion as a money manager at Notz, Stucki & Cie. in Geneva.

“Even though the markets may be afraid of a rate hike in the US sooner than they thought before, this doesn’t affect ECB policy and the European economy. We know Europe is healing. The Greek news once again put some stress on the European markets. There is some volatility.”

Investors will continue to watch developments as Greece’s Syriza-led administration seeks bailout loans. Greek officials plan to meet with creditors in Brussels today as time runs short to secure a deal before the country needs to make payments to the International Monetary Fund in early June.

There has been little convergence in recent talks to release funds the country needs to pay the IMF almost 1.6 billion euros next month, said people familiar with the matter, who asked not to be identified because the discussions are private. The first of the transfers is due June 5.

Among other stocks moving on corporate news, Assicurazioni Generali SpA gained 1.2 percent. Europe’s third-largest insurer said it plans to increase dividends and boost cash flow to more than 7 billion euros by 2018.