Miners lead rebound in European shares after upbeat China data

Reuters

* FTSEurofirst 300 rises 4.7 points to 1,284.96

* Miners rally after China PMI beats expectations

* Autos led higher by Daimler after Q3 results

* Nordic banks, WPP and ABB get results boost

* Ericsson leads losers on earnings worries

By David Brett

LONDON, Oct 24 (Reuters) - Miners led a rebound in Europeanshares early on Thursday driven by better-than-expectedmanufacturing data from China, the world's largest consumer ofraw materials.

Mining shares rose 0.9 percent after the flash Markit/HSBCPurchasing Managers Index (PMI) for China hit a seven-monthhigh.

"The world's second-largest economy picking up steam iscertainly good news for the mining sector, and it looks like therecent (broader market) rally will continue until the year-end,"Mark Ward, head of trading at Sanlam Securities, said.

Societe Generale analysts, however, sounded a cautious noteon the outlook in China arguing that with growth stabilisingafter a slowdown policymakers seem to be shifting their focusback to risk management.

"The leadership still intends to delever the economy, whichis the main reason behind our call that the secular decelerationtrend is far from over," it said.

Kazakh miner Kazakhmys was a strong performer,rising 4.5 percent after the company said it was on track to hitthe "upper end" of its output guidance for 2013.

Liberum in a note said despite near-term obstacles it seesscope for upgrading Kazakhmys if efforts to improve its productsand reduce higher-cost production are successful.

On the broader mining sector, UBS said in its commoditystrategy that it saw upside risks to its house view andconsensus on gold and silver in the year ahead.

Its preferred precious metals stocks boasted strong returnsand good cost control and included London-listed Fresnillo. Among industrial miners, UBS has a strong preferencefor low-cost producers with the potential to raise cashflowsharply, namely Rio Tinto and BHP Billiton.

Gains among miners helped the FTSEurofirst 300 rebound 4.71 points, or 0.4 percent to 1,284.96 by 0730 GMT,after a 0.6 percent dip on Wednesday.

The index hovered around five-year highs while investorsdevoured another batch of corporate earnings as the quarterlyresults season got into full swing.

Auto-related stocks, which are heavily reliant ondemand from China for growth, rose 1.3 percent with most of thegains coming from German car maker Daimler.

Daimler jumped 2.3 percent after its results for the threemonths through September beat forecasts and it announcedfull-year profit would meet market expectations.

Nordic banks DNB and SEB climbed as muchas 5.9 percent after both reported forecast-beating quarterlyresults.

Swiss industrial group ABB and WPP, theworld's largest advertising company, also rose 3.9 percent and 2percent respectively, after results.

But after a strong start to the earnings season thepercentage of companies beating or meeting analyst estimates hasfallen to 53 percent from 63 percent earlier this week,according to Starmine data, which is roughly in line with thelast three-quarters.

Mobile telecom gear maker Ericsson (ERICb.ST ) led thetechnology sector lower, skidding 6.5 percent afterthird-quarter profit and sales missed consensus forecasts.

Dutch digital security services provider Gemalto shed 3.2 percent as its third-quarter sales disappointedinvestors.

A strong run of gains has seen the Stoxx 600 re-rate on a price-to-earnings of 13.29 times against a 10-yearaverage of 12 times, according to Datastream, so focus isfalling on corporate earnings which are under pressure tojustify the re-rating.

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