Germany's DAX climbs to 3-week high, European shares up
* DAX up 0.5 pct, FTSEurofirst 300 up 0.4 pct * Germany's private sector grows for 16th month in Aug. * Miners down after disappointing China data By Atul Prakash LONDON, Aug 21 (Reuters) - European shares rose on Thursday, with Germany's DAX index climbing to a three-week high after a survey showed the country's private sector grew for the 16th month running in August. The DAX rose 0.5 percent to 9,355.57 points by 0826 GMT after the PMI survey raised expectations that Europe's largest economy could expand robustly in the third quarter after it suffered a surprise contraction in the second. "It's a relief rally. There were concerns that the German economy was going to suffer because of Ukraine-related issues, but today's data shows that the economy is going to keep on growing," Koen De Leus, senior economist at KBC, said. Austria's Raiffeisen Bank International rose 5 percent, the top gainer in the FTSEurofirst 300 index, after saying it expected "no significant impact" from western sanctions against Russia, underscoring its commitment to its single most profitable market. The broader European stock market gained, with the FTSEurofirst 300 index of top European shares rising 0.4 percent to 1,351.63 points. Miners lost some ground after disappointing manufacturing data from China, the world's biggest metals consumer. The STOXX Europe 600 Basic Resources index fell 0.4 percent, the biggest sectoral decliner in Europe, after the HSBC/Markit Flash China Manufacturing Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) fell to 50.3 in August from July's 18-month high of 51.7, badly missing a Reuters forecast of 51.5. Miners Rio Tinto, BHP Billiton and Antofagasta dropped 0.3 to 0.6 percent. Investors' focus is shifting to the annual meeting of top central bankers in Jackson Hole from Thursday through Saturday. Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen is expected to acknowledge that while U.S. data has generally been supportive, she remains concerned about slack in the labor market. She will speak on Friday. Minutes from the Fed's July 29-30 meeting showed late on Wednesday that most Fed officials wanted more evidence before changing their view on when rates should rise. On the European earnings front, the picture was mixed. Dutch supermarket group Ahold reported weaker-than-expected operating profit for the second quarter, while Swiss dental implant maker Nobel Biocare's net profit almost doubled. Ahold shares fell 2 percent and Nobel Biocare was up 2.1 percent. Europe bourses in 2014: link.reuters.com/pap87v Asset performance in 2014: link.reuters.com/gap87v Today's European research round-up (editing by John Stonestreet)
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