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Important information: The value of investments can go down as well as up so you may get back less than you invest. Investors should note that the views expressed may no longer be current and may have already been acted upon. This is a third-party news feed and may not reflect Fidelity’s views.

Europe open: Shares rally ahead of US inflation data

(Sharecast News) - European shares rallied at the open on Thursday as investors digested a raft of Christmas trading updates and awaited the latest US inflation figures later in the day. The pan-regional Stoxx 600 index was up 0.63% at 479.4 in early deals with all major Continental bourses higher after strong performances in the US and Asia overnight.

"The buoyancy looks to be driven by renewed speculation that the US Federal Reserve will begin reducing interest rates, possibly at its next rates-setting meeting in March," said Steve Clayton, head of equity funds at Hargreaves Lansdown.

"Whether the Fed does indeed cut rates, keep them steady or even raise them still further depends on the outlook for US inflation. The latest US consumer price data, which according to Bloomberg's survey of economic forecasters, is widely expected to register further declines, falling down below 4% in December."

"As always, the devil will be in the detail, and traders will be looking to see how much of the change in the data is driven by core factors and how much relates to volatile items like energy."

In equity news, shares in UK retailer Marks & Spencer fell, despite a strong rise in Christmas sales driven by food.

Reporting by Frank Prenesti for Sharecast.com

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Important information: This information is not a personal recommendation for any particular investment. If you are unsure about the suitability of an investment you should speak to one of Fidelity’s advisers or an authorised financial adviser of your choice. When you are thinking about investing in shares, it’s generally a good idea to consider holding them alongside other investments in a diversified portfolio of assets. Past performance is not a reliable indicator of future returns.

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