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Europe closes higher in shortened trading session

European equities closed marginally higher on Tuesday as upbeat U.S. economic sentiment continued to buoy sentiment in Europe, but with the holidays approaching, trading was thin.

The U.K.'s FTSE 100 Index closed provisionally higher by 0.2 percent on Tuesday. France's CAC 40 Index closed provisionally higher by just 0.07 percent with Spain's IBEX 35 Index gaining 0.68 percent. German, Italian, Swiss and Scandinavian bourses were all closed for the Christmas holidays.

French gross domestic product (GDP) was confirmed as growing by 0.1 percent for the third quarter, according to the INSEE National Statistics. The second-quarter figure was revised up to 0.6 percent from a previous estimate of 0.5 percent.

Dutch growth data posted a figure of 0.2 percent for the quarter, beating market expectations of 0.1 percent.

Meanwhile, Asian equity markets cheered another record close on Wall Street overnight, led by fresh six-year highs on Japan's benchmark index.

Wall Street shares powered higher on Monday after data showed consumer sentiment at a five-month high and spending up in November, pushing the Dow to its 48th record close this year. Gains in Apple and Facebook also lifted the Nasdaq to a 13-year high.

China's cash squeeze eased after the benchmark 7-day repurchase rate opened around 5.5 percent on Tuesday, well-off the previous day's 9 percent high, after the People's Bank of China (PBOC) injected $4.7 billion through open-market operations for the first time in three weeks.

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