European shares rally on Chinese data, Aegon leads
* FTSEurofirst 300 index gains 1.2 percent
* China's trade data helps market sentiment
* Aegon jumps after updates; mining stocks in demand (Updates prices)
By Atul Prakash
LONDON, Jan 13 (Reuters) - European shares advanced on Wednesday, led by Dutch insurer Aegon following an business update, with better-than-expected Chinese trade data also soothing investor sentiment.
Commodities-related stocks were in demand as metals and oil prices rose. The European mining and energy indexes gained 3 percent and 2.8 percent respectively, helped by rises in Rio Tinto, BHP Billiton, BP and Royal Dutch Shell of between 2 and 4 percent.
Aegon surged 11 percent, making it the biggest gainer in the pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 index, after the group provided an update on its strategy, gave financial targets and said it will increase its profitability and capital returns.
The FTSEurofirst 300 rose 1.2 percent to 1,365.99 points by 1108 GMT, extending Tuesday's gains and following losses in the previous four sessions to a three-month low on concerns about the pace of economic growth in China.
Sentiment improved slightly after data showed China's total trade fell far less than expected in December. Exports fell 1.4 percent from a year earlier, compared to a forecast 8 percent drop and a 6.8 percent decline in November. Continuación...