November 24, 2017 / 8:20 AM / in 2 months

European shares set to snap 2-week losing streak as consumer stocks buoyant

LONDON, Nov 24 (Reuters) - European shares edged higher in early deals on Friday, underpinned by gains among heavyweight consumer goods firms as the pan-European STOXX 600 index was set to snap a two-week losing streak.

The STOXX 600 index was 0.1 percent higher, while Germany’s DAX advanced 0.2 percent.

The growing prospect of a grand coalition in Germany also boosted sentiment around the region’s equities, as the DAX has been stuck around the 13,000-point level for the past two weeks.

Germany’s Social Democrats said that they were ready to hold talks with other parties on breaking the political deadlock.

Though corporate news was sparse, shares in consumer staples firms were in focus after China said that it would cut import tariffs on some consumer products. Shares in Danone rose 1.2 percent, as did shares in Diageo.

Europe’s food and beverages index was the standout sectoral gainer, up 0.5 percent.

Provident Financial was among the biggest fallers, down 1.3 percent after the subprime lender said that its Executive Chairman Manjit Wolstenholme died on Thursday.

Wolstenholme had been appointed to the position in August, with the aim of turning around the troubled lender.

Reporting by Kit Rees; Editing by Georgina Prodhan

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