European shares propped up by firmer bank and retail stocks
* STOXX 600 index up 0.4 percent
* Edenred gains after strategic plan (Follow European and UK stock markets in real time on the Reuters Live Markets blog on Eikon - see cpurl://apps.cp./cms/?pageId=livemarkets)
By Sudip Kar-Gupta
LONDON, Oct 19 (Reuters) - European stocks rose on Wednesday as gains in the shares of major banks and retail companies offset weaker earnings elsewhere in the market.
The pan-European STOXX 600 index rose 0.4 percent, although the index remains down by around 6 percent since the start of 2016.
The European bank index got a lift to stand 1.1 percent higher after Wall Street bank Morgan Stanley reported better-than-forecast profits on Wednesday.
"Morgan Stanley's results have generally been a positive for the banking sector across the board," said Hantec Markets' analyst Richard Perry.
However, the banking index is down by around 20 percent since the start of the year due to concerns over bad debts at Italian banks, while Deutsche Bank also hit record lows last month.
The STOXX Europe 600 Retail index also outperformed to rise by 1.4 percent. Continuación...