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Stocks

European shares mirror mood after Greece debt deal

Stocks across Europe have pointed sharply upward after policy makers finally reached a deal to save Greece from bankruptcy by unlocking another bailout tranche. The stocks of banks have profited most.

European shares climbed to their highest level in almost three weeks in early trading on Tuesday, reflecting the mood after a political deal on how to handle Greek debt.

International lenders had clinched an agreement to reduce Athens' debt load and disburse yet another aid installment designed to rescue Greece from bankruptcy and keep it in the 17-member euro area.

The FTSE Eurofirst-300 started 0.5 percent higher after the opening bells, with London's FTSE-100, Paris' CAC-40 and Frankfurt's blue-chip DAX-30 all gaining between 0.5 and 0.9 percent in morning trade.

Banks at a premium

"Although many traders had expected a compromise deal on Greece and had seen markets pricing it in already, it still means there's much less uncertainty around now," said ETC Capital trader Markus Huber in explaining Tuesday's market response.

"The political will to reward Greek austerity and reform measures has already been there for a while," ING economist Carsten Brzeski added. "Now this political will has finally been supplemented by financial support."

Banking stocks were among the biggest winners across Europe. In Germany's Commerzbank shares climbed by 3.0 percent in early trading, with Deutsche Bank up by 2.0 percent. The euro also rose initially in the Asian session, but gains were pared later in the day.

hg/mz (Reuters, dpa)