Greek shares lead European shares higher after ECB boost

viernes 23 de enero de 2015 07:50 GYT

* FTSEurofirst 300 rises 1.6 pct, hits 7-year high

* Athens' index rises ahead of vote, led by banks

* European shares enjoy best week since 2011

* Cyclical stocks such as carmakers among top gainers (Recasts, adds quote, detail)

By Alistair Smout

LONDON, Jan 23 (Reuters) - Greek shares led euro zone stock markets higher on Friday, boosted before Sunday's pivotal elections by the European Central Bank's decision to buy government bonds.

European shares were set for their biggest weekly gain in over three years, as investors cheered the ECB's quantitative easing programme to battle deflation.

The bond-buying scheme helped Greece's ATG share index rise 5.2 percent, with Attica Bank, National Bank of Greece and Piraeus Bank up between 11.6 percent and 8.8 percent.

Traders also saw a greater chance that anti-bailout party Syriza, currently leading in the polls, would reach a compromise with Greece's official lenders if they came into power.   Continuación...