FTSEurofirst 300 hits new 7-yr high on China data, QE hopes

martes 20 de enero de 2015 08:15 GYT

* FTSEurofirst 300 index up 1 pct, hits new 7-yr high

* China data, German ZEW and QE hopes boost sentiment

* Greek shares fall; Syriza gains momentum

By Atul Prakash and Blaise Robinson

LONDON, Jan 20 (Reuters) - European shares climbed to a new seven-year high on Tuesday after data showed China's economic growth had slowed less than feared and expectations grew that the European Central Bank would launch a quantitative easing programme later this week.

Sentiment also improved after a survey showed German analyst and investor sentiment jumped in January for the third straight month, helped by low oil prices and a weaker euro, boosting hopes for a rebound in Europe's biggest economy.

At 1142 GMT, the FTSEurofirst 300 index of top European shares was up 1 percent at 1,423.86 points, reaching a second seven-year high in as many days after China data.

China's economy grew 7.4 percent in 2014, its slowest pace in 24 years and just missing the official 7.5 percent target. But the data was welcomed with relief by investors who had feared a sharper slowdown.

"A slowdown in China seems to be at a very moderate and controlled pace and that's positive for the market," Ronny Claeys, senior strategist at KBC Asset Management in Brussels, said. "The German survey showing investors, who drive the market, are optimistic also helped European equities."   Continuación...