European shares hit two-week high, stay vulnerable

martes 11 de febrero de 2014 09:11 GYT

* FTSEurofirst 300 index gains 0.8 percent

* Corporate newsflow helps market

* Barclays, L'Oreal shares fall sharply

By Atul Prakash

LONDON, Feb 11 (Reuters) - European shares reached a two-week high on Tuesday as encouraging results from companies like BMW and Hexagon boosted optimism ahead of remarks by the new head of the U.S. Federal Reserve that are expected to be dovish.

Measurement technology group Hexagon rose 6.7 percent to the top of the pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 index . Hexagon posted fourth-quarter sales and operating profit in line with expectations and said its sales should grow at least 5 percent in 2014.

Luxury carmaker BMW gained 1.8 percent on record vehicle sales in January. Competing automaker Daimler advanced 2.7 percent after Societe Generale raised its target price for the stock, helping the European auto index to rise 1.9 percent.

"The market is supported by some positive corporate news," said Daniel McCormack, a strategist with Macquarie. "Equities will further react positively if we get some more positive news on earnings, which has been disappointing."

At 1223 GMT, the FTSEurofirst 300 index was up 0.8 percent to 1,310.92 points. It had climbed to its highest since late January in a fifth straight session of gains.   Continuación...