Earnings lift European shares as ASML boosts tech, Reckitt jumps

LONDON, July 19 (Reuters) – A slew of upbeat updates from
European firms helped regional indexes rise in early deals on
Wednesday and recoup some of the previous session’s sharp

With almost every sector in positive territory, the
pan-European STOXX 600 index rose up 0.3 percent while
the blue chips gained 0.2 percent.

Dutch semiconductor equipment maker ASML, up 4
percent, boosted the tech sector. The firm beat
quarterly earnings estimates thanks to strong demand from
manufacturers of memory chips.

Likewise strong first-quarter results from British packaging
firm RPC Group boosted the stock more than 6 percent to
the top of the STOXX, while home appliance maker Electrolux
hit a record high after reporting a
bigger-than-expected rise in second-quarter earnings and lifting
its market forecast for North America.

Falls among mining firms weighed on Britain’s FTSE 100
, which declined 0.1 percent, while mid caps were
flat in percentage terms as utility Drax Group dropped 6
percent after reporting a first half pretax loss.

Cross-border deal-making rolled on with Reckitt Benckiser
up 1.6 percent after saying it would sell its food
business to U.S. spice and herbs co McCormick & Co Inc
for $4.2 bln. Reckitt shares were the biggest boosts on the FTSE
(Reporting by Kit Rees, Editing by Vikram Subhedar)