* FTSEurofirst 300 up 0.2 pct, energy sector index up 5.5 pct
* Total and Repsol rise after Shell’s move for BG
* Car stocks underperform
By Blaise Robinson
PARIS, April 8 (Reuters) - European shares rose on Wednesday, led by a rally in energy stocks after Royal Dutch Shell agreed to buy BG Group for 47 billion pounds ($70 billion) in the first oil super-merger in a decade.
Shares in BG jumped 37 percent, while Tullow Oil soared 10.8 percent. BP gained 3.3 percent, Spain’s Repsol added 1.8 percent and France’s Total climbed 1.2 percent. Royal Dutch Shell fell 2.1 percent, reflecting the high premium it is paying for BG.
The STOXX energy sector index, hammered in the past year as oil prices tumbled, advanced 5.3 percent and the sector’s rise enabled the pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 index to progress by 0.2 percent to 1,615.29 points.
“The sector has been ripe for consolidation given the bearish outlook for oil prices, and we could see other takeovers in the industry in the coming weeks and months. Overall, the M&A wave which is spreading to a number of sectors is very good for the market,” said Saxo Bank trader Andrea Tueni.
The FTSEurofirst was close to an eight-year high while the rise in Total enabled France’s CAC to stand near its highest level in around 7-1/2 years.
Shell’s move for BG came a day after FedEx’s 4.4 billion-euro ($4.8 billion) bid for Dutch package delivery firm TNT Express sparked a rally in that particular sector.
The mergers and acquisitions (M&A) momentum also spread to the media industry on Wednesday, with traders citing bid rumours as moving Sky higher. A spokesman for Sky declined to comment on the market speculation.
“The M&A momentum is keeping things on a firmer footing,” said Mike Turner, European equity options broker at XBZ Ltd.
Bucking the trend, shares in carmakers lost ground, trimming gains made since the start of the year, after a number of brokers raised doubts about valuation ratios in the sector.
Peugeot was down 2.7 percent and BMW retreated by 2.1 percent.
Europe bourses in 2015: link.reuters.com/pap87v
Asset performance in 2015: link.reuters.com/gap87v
Today’s European research round-up (Additional reporting by Sudip Kar-Gupta; Editing by Jon Boyle)