ECB boost helps push European shares to highest since Nov 2007

jueves 5 de marzo de 2015 13:42 GYT

(Updates prices at settle)

* FTSEurofirst 300 up 0.8 pct, hits high since Nov 07

* ECB says QE may last beyond 2016, raises forecasts

* European earnings up 22 pct, best season since mid-2011

By Francesco Canepa and Blaise Robinson

LONDON/PARIS, March 5 (Reuters) - European shares reached their highest in more than seven years on Thursday, boosted by encouraging comments from the European Central Bank and by strong results from supermarket Carrefour and fund manager Schroders.

ECB President Mario Draghi said the bank's bond-buying programme, due to start on Monday, may last beyond September 2016 if necessary and dismissed concerns it might struggle to find sellers for the bonds. It also increased its economic growth forecasts for this year and next.

"He showed his determination to stick with the programme and dismissed ... the problem" of finding sellers, said Joost Van Leenders, chief economist of multi-asset solutions at BNP Paribas Investment Partners. "Overall, that's positive for equities."

The FTSEurofirst 300 index of top European shares was up 0.8 percent at 1,569.48 points. It reached its highest level since November 2007 at 1,572.02 points as Draghi was speaking.   Continuación...