European equities closed higher on Wednesday, bouncing back heavy losses seen in the previous session, with stocks of exporting companies boosted by the falling euro (Exchange:EUR=).
Euro zone stock indexes enjoyed a broad rally across major bourses and sectors-with the exception of Greece.
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The German benchmark DAX (^GDAXI) index, the French CAC (Euronext Paris: .FCHI) and the Italian FTSE MIB (FTSE International: .FTMIB) all closed over 2 percent higher, with the Spanish IBEX (Mercado Continuo: .IBEX) gaining around 1.5 percent.
The U.K., which uses sterling rather than euro, saw narrow gains on its benchmark FTSE 100 (FTSE International: .FTSE), which ended around 0.2 percent higher.
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The Athens Composite closed more than 2 percent lower, as the battle between Greece’s new left-wing government and its “troika” of bailout supervisors over the terms of its international bailout continue. The cash-strapped government has requested a four-month extension to its bailout, but rejects the troika’s demands for austerity and structural reforms.
The euro fell below $ 1.06 on Wednesday for the first time in 12 years, extending its decline after the European Central Bank started its 1.1 trillion euro ($ 1.2 trillion) asset-buying program this week.
The decline has boosted indexes that heavily feature major exporters, such as the German DAX.
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Best-performing stocks on Wednesday included Adecco (Swiss Exchange: ADEN-CH), which closed well over 5 percent higher, after the Swiss multinational’s fourth-quarter profit beat market expectations.
In addition, shares of Remy Cointreau (Euronext Paris: RCO-FR) ended around 4.4 percent higher after Goldman Sachs raised its outlook on the firm to “buy” from “neutral.”
Renault (Euronext Paris: RNO-FR) shares also rose around 4 percent after a price target upgrade from Exane BNP Paribas.
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