European shares rise as banks' rally strengthens
LONDON, March 14 (Reuters) - European shares rose on Monday, extending gains made in the previous session and with banking stocks among the top performers, as funding plans from the European Central Bank buoyed the sector.
The pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 index, which had climbed 2.7 percent on Friday, was up 0.9 percent.
Banks such as Monte dei Paschi and Banco Comercial Portugues were among the top performers, rising 7.3 percent and 5 percent respectively.
Analysts said euro zone banks in the so-called "peripheral" nations of Italy, Spain and Portugal were continuing to rally on the ECB's plans for a new round of cheap funding for the sector.
"We believe there is enough value in the sector for continued performance on central bank stimulus - with peripheral banks likely to lead the way," said RBC Europe analyst Robert Noble. (Reporting by Sudip Kar-Gupta; Editing by Toby Chopra)
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