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* Pan-European STOXX 600 index rises 0.7 pct
* Siemens rises after raising outlook
* French group BIC also surges after H1 update
* Shares in Hikma, Hannover RE as results disappoint
By Danilo Masoni
MILAN, Aug 4 (Reuters) - European shares rose 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 STOXX 600 rose 0.7 percent, although it is down 7.7 percent so far in 2016. The pan-European index extended gains after the Bank of England cut interest rates for the first time since 2009 and revived bond purchases, while Britain’s FTSE turned higher and ended up 1.6 percent.
“Today’s BoE action is a significant step in attempting to support the UK,” said Nandini Ramakrishnan, Global Market Strategist at JP Morgan Asset Management.
The prospect of lower rates and more monetary stimulus measures from the BoE 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.
Europe’s continuing corporate earnings season delivered relatively upbeat news from a few heavyweights.
Shares in Siemens rose 4.5 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 4.4 percent after the stationery and shavers group confirmed its 2016 financial outlook, while insurer Aviva climbed 5 percent after reporting higher interim profits.
Swedish security company Securitas touched a record high as strength it its North American business helped it deliver a earnings growth beat in the last quarter.
However, shares in drugmaker Hikma slumped 16.7 percent, topping fallers on the STOXX index, after it warned of a hit to profits from its generics unit.
Hannover RE slid 4.8 percent after big damage claims contributed to a sharper than expected 15 percent fall in quarterly net profit at the German reinsurer. (Additional reporting by Sudip Kargupta in London; Editing by Richard Balmforth)