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European equities on course to end volatile September on bright note

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(For a Reuters live blog on U.S., UK and European stock markets, click LIVE/ or type LIVE/ in a news window)

Sept 30 (Reuters) - European stocks rose on Thursday, extending gains after a bruising sell-off earlier this week as lingering worries about slowing global economic growth and higher inflation put the main markets on course for a monthly drop.

The pan-regional STOXX 600 index rose 0.6% by 0718 GMT, led by defensive sectors such as real estate, healthcare and food & beverages, while miners rebounded from sharp declines fuelled by worries about China's economy.

The benchmark is on track to end September with losses of 2.7% after a seven-month winning streak, as a surge in government bond yields drove investors out of high-growth sectors.

Among stocks, Sweden's H&M rose 1.9% after it reported a bigger-than-expected jump in quarterly pretax profit as shoppers returned to stores, while spirits maker Diageo Plc gained 2.0% after it forecast a boost to operating margins as people opt for premium brands.

British online fashion retailer Boohoo tumbled 10.3% as it warned that freight inflation and higher wages for its distribution centre workers would impact full-year profit margins. (Reporting by Sruthi Shankar in Bengaluru; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)