* FTSEurofirst 300 up 0.3 pct, DAX up 0.5 pct
* Stimulus speculation helps euro zone stocks
* DAX gains ground for 11th straight session
* Energy shares under pressure ahead of OPEC meeting (Adds quote, detail)
By Alistair Smout
LONDON, Nov 27 (Reuters) - European shares rose on Thursday, adding to their recent sharp rally that has been fuelled by expectations of further stimulus measures from the European Central Bank.
The region’s indexes were led higher by Germany’s DAX , which was up 0.5 percent to outperform peers, rising for its 11th straight session.
Germany’s unemployment rate touched a record low in November, highlighting the gap between the euro zone’s largest economy and its struggling euro zone partners.
At the same time Spanish and Italian stocks rose as expectations mounted that the European Central Bank would buy bonds.
On Wednesday, ECB Vice President Vitor Constancio said the bank might decide as early as the first quarter of next year whether to begin buying sovereign bonds.
A near 20 percent rally for the DAX since the middle of October has brought the index within a hundred points of breaking the all-time high, set in June.
“We had very weak data coming out of Germany for last quarter, but the data we’ve had over the last two weaks have been encouraging. Meanwhile, other euro zone data is stabilising but not getting better,” Veronika Pechlaner, European fund manager at Ashburton, said.
“We’ll need to see more action from the ECB for the rally in weaker markets to be extended. With action next year expected, maybe only measures in December will surprise markets.”
Chipmaker Infineon dropped 2 percent, bucking the trend in Germany, after results missed forecasts - one of only six stocks to fall on the DAX.
At 1215 GMT, the FTSEurofirst 300 index of top European shares was up 0.3 percent at 1,393.10 points, with trading curtailed by a holiday in the United States.
“Volumes will be very low today with Wall Street closed for Thanksgiving, and the big focus will be on the OPEC meeting,” FXCM analyst Vincent Ganne said.
Shares in oil majors and oil services firms lost ground again as Brent crude fell to a four-year low under $76 a barrel ahead of the OPEC meeting in Vienna.
Royal Dutch Shell fell 0.7 percent, BG dropped 1.4 percent and Seadrill shed 3.2 percent.
A number of oil services firms including Seadrill have been forced to scrap their dividend as the sector struggles with the slump in crude prices that has prompted oil majors to slash capital expenditure.
Euronext, the operator of the Paris, Amsterdam, Lisbon and Brussels bourses, said the technical incident impacting indices earlier on Thursday had been resolved.
Europe bourses in 2014: link.reuters.com/pap87v
Asset performance in 2014: link.reuters.com/gap87v
Today’s European research round-up (Editing by Elaine Hardcastle)