* FTSEurofirst 300 up 0.1 pct
* Indexes in tight range ahead of Scotland vote, Fed
* Heineken rebuffs SABMiller bid
* Report AB InBev seeking financing for SABMiller deal
By Blaise Robinson
PARIS, Sept 15 (Reuters) - European shares rose around midday on Monday, led by a sharp rally in brewers such as SABMiller and Heineken sparked by M&A activity in the sector.
Shares in SABMiller jumped 13 percent to a record high following a report in the Wall Street Journal saying that rival Anheuser-Busch InBev is in talks with banks about financing a possible $122 billion bid to acquire SABMiller.
The steep rise in the shares of SABMiller represented a swing of roughly $11 billion in its market value.
Shares in Heineken also rallied, up 3.6 percent after saying it was approached by SABMiller about a potential takeover but that its controlling shareholder intended to keep the company independent.
AB InBev shares were up 2.8 percent, while Carlsberg was up 2.9 percent.
“Companies are finally starting to put their big piles of cash to work. This will be good for M&A, and good for the market. There are many sectors ripe for consolidation,” a Paris-based trader said.
Hennes & Mauritz also featured among the top gainers, up 2.4 percent after the fashion retailer said sales climbed nearly 20 percent in August, beating forecasts.
Factoring out the rally in H&M, the Stockholm bourse was little changed after Swedes voted on Sunday for a minority left government.
At 1149 GMT, the FTSEurofirst 300 index of top European shares was up 0.1 percent at 1,383.94 points. The index has been moving sideways over the past week, stuck in a tight range pending the Fed’s meeting and Scotland’s referendum later this week.
The latest round of polls showed Thursday’s vote on Scottish independence still too close to call. One poll showed the “No” vote 8 points in front, another showed the same lead for the Yes camp and two others gave a 51-49 percent and 53-47 percent split respectively in favour of sticking with the union.
“There are many risk events coming up this week, including the Fed meeting and the vote in Scotland. The market should lose steam ahead of these big events ... we’re keeping a close eye on support levels,” Barclays France director Franklin Pichard said.
Recent talk the Fed might turn hawkish at its policy meeting this week, possibly by dropping its commitment to keeping interest rates low, has pushed up U.S. Treasury yields and the dollar.
Europe bourses in 2014: link.reuters.com/pap87v
Asset performance in 2014: link.reuters.com/gap87v
Today’s European research round-up
additional reporting by Vikram Subhedar in London; Editing by Ruth Pitchford