Most European stocks push higher at open

GMT 11:29 2015 Wednesday ,24 June

Arab Today, arab today Most European stocks push higher at open

Frankfurt's DAX 30 index
London - AFP

Most European stock markets pushed higher at the start of trading on Wednesday, building on two days of gains on hopes of there finally being a deal over Greece's bailout.

Frankfurt's DAX 30 index gained 0.36 percent to 11,584.40 points and London's benchmark FTSE 100 index rose 0.16 percent to 6,852.50 compared with Tuesday's close.

But the CAC 40 in Paris slipped 0.01 percent to 5,057.24 points as telecoms stocks took a hammering when a buyout offer that would result in the number of mobile operators in France dropping from four to three was rejected.

Meanwhile the euro rose to $1.1199 from $1.1168 late on Tuesday in New York.

"Equity markets continue to put their faith in a potential deal for Greece, with perceptions of risk falling across Europe and sending markets higher," said Rebecca O'Keeffe, Head of Investment at stockbroker Interactive Investor.

"However, the next few days will prove pivotal -- not least for Tsipras, who will have to sell any reforms he agrees to a divided Greek parliament and public," she added.

Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras will meet the leaders of Greece's creditors -- the EU's Jean-Claude Juncker, the ECB's Mario Draghi and the IMF's Christine Lagarde -- in Brussels on Wednesday to discuss the latest proposals that Athens has made.

Eurozone finance ministers will also meet on the proposals ahead of an EU summit on Thursday.

The Greek proposals were a last-ditch bid to unlock the final 7.2 billion euro tranche of its current bailout programme. If it fails to get the funds it will almost certainly be unable to make a 1.5 billion euro payment to the IMF at the end of the month.

In France shares in telecoms companies fell after the board of French group Bouygues late on Tuesday unanimously rejected the buyout offer made for its network made by rival group Altice.

In early trading shares in Bouygues, the parent company of Bouygues Telecom, slumped 6.23 percent to 35.53 euros.

Meanwhile shares in Altice's French telecoms unit, Numericable-SFR, plunged 11.49 percent to 48.21 euros.

Shares in market leader Orange fell by 3.01 percent to 14.50 euros and the stock in Iliad, parent company of low-cost operator Free, dove by 6.18 percent to 214.10 euros.

Meanwhile shares in Dutch retail giant Ahold and its Belgian rival Delhaize rose after they officially announced their merger, creating one of the world's largest retail companies with a turnover of more than 54 billion euros ($61 billion).

Shares in Ahold rose by 1.83 percent to 18.96 euros in early trade in Amsterdam while Delhaize shares soared by 8.41 percent to 88.03 in Brussels.

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