October 18, 2012 / 7:10 AM / 5 years ago

European shares stutter near one-month highs

LONDON, Oct 18 (Reuters) - European shares staggered higher early on Thursday, approaching the top of the recent range, supported by solid Chinese data but capped by concerns over corporate earnings.

By 0702 GMT, the FTSEurofirst is up 0.06 points at 1,118.68, nearing the highs of around 1,121 reached after the European Central Bank announced its bond-buying plans at the end of August.

Investors will focus on a European leaders summit on Thursday in Brussels, although no substantial decisions are expected.

“We are close to the top of the current range. We could edge higher if Spain asks for assistance from the European Central Bank, but any gains will likely be short-lived as investors focus on company earnings,” Heinz-Gerd Sonnenschein, equity markets strategist at Deutsche Postbank, in Bonn, said.

AkzoNobel NV, the world’s largest paints maker, fell 2 percent after it reported a 2.4 billion euro ($3.15 billion) net loss in the third quarter.

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