European shares edged higher on Wednesday ahead of the U.S. Federal Reserve's rate decision later in the day, while UK data showing inflation eased more than expected in August helped British stocks outperform regional peers.
The pan-European STOXX 600 index gained 0.3% after two consecutive sessions of losses, as healthcare shares climbed nearly 1% by 0709 GMT.
Capping early gains, shares of LVMH eased 0.4% on being downgraded to "hold" by Jefferies and having its price target trimmed by Deutsche Bank, as investor sentiment surrounding the China-exposed luxury giant cooled.
Jefferies also downgraded Kering (EPA:PRTP) and Moncler, sending their shares down 0.8% and 0.9%, respectively.
Investor focus will be on the Fed's rate decision, where the U.S. central bank is expected to stand pat on rates.
UK's export-oriented FTSE 100 gained 0.6% as the pound slid after British annual consumer price inflation (CPI) unexpectedly fell in August, pushing investors to scale back their bets on rate hikes by the Bank of England, a day before its next policy announcement.
Pearson fell 4.5% after the British education group said it has appointed Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) executive Omar Abbosh as its new CEO, effective early 2024.
Shares of Just Eat Takeaway jumped nearly 6% after a federal judge said on Tuesday the company's U.S. unit Grubhub and other food delivery groups can sue New York City over a law capping how much it can charge restaurants for delivering meals.
Source : Economy News by Reuters / September 20, 2023