(ADVISORY- Follow European and UK stock markets in real time on the Reuters Live Markets blog on Eikon - see cpurl://apps.cp./cms/?pageId=livemarkets)
* Siemens rises after raising outlook
* French group BIC also surges after H1 update
* Shares in Hikma slump
By Sudip Kar-Gupta
LONDON, Aug 4 (Reuters) - European stocks climbed on Thursday as a rise in the shares of major financial and industrial stocks such as Aviva and Siemens boosted the region’s equity markets.
The pan-European STOXX 600 index rose 0.4 percent, although the index remains down around 8 percent so far in 2016.
Many investors were focusing on the Bank of England, which is expected to cut interest rates for the first time since 2009 later in the day.
The prospect of lower rates and more monetary stimulus measures from the Bank of England and European Central Bank (ECB) have enabled European stock markets to recover from the hit they suffered in late June, following Britain’s shock vote to quit the European Union.
“Looser monetary policy should be supportive for the UK and European stock markets,” said Hantec Markets’ analyst Richard Perry.
Europe’s continuing corporate earnings season delivered relatively upbeat news from a few heavyweights.
Shares in Siemens rose 3 percent after the German industrial group lifted its full-year earnings forecast for the second time this year.
“In our view, the transformation of the conglomerate continues. The Q3 report was better than expected,” said DZ Bank analyst Alexander Hauenstein, commenting on Siemens’ results. He kept a “buy” rating on the stock.
French company BIC also surged 6.8 percent after the stationery and shavers group confirmed its 2016 financial outlook, while insurer Aviva climbed 5 percent after reporting higher interim profits.
However, shares in drugmaker Hikma slumped 14.6 percent after it warned of a hit to profits from its generics unit. (Editing by Alexander Smith)