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Europe closes higher; Pandora shares surge; Greece, commodities in focus

European equities ended higher on Tuesday, as sentiment was lifted by a handful of positive earnings and a sharp tick-up in commodity stocks and prices.

The pan-European STOXX 600 came off session highs, to finish up 0.9 percent provisionally. All major sectors ended higher, with the exception of technology.

Britain's FTSE 100 and Germany's DAX both posted gains of 0.6 to 0.7 percent by the close, while France's CAC closed up 0.4 percent.

In peripheral markets, Athens stock exchange jumped 3.2 percent, after the country was offered further debt relief.

Market movers: Bank earnings, commodities

Symbol
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Price
 
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FTSE
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DAX
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CAC
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IBEX 35
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Banks were one of Europe's top-performing stock sectors on Tuesday.

Credit Suisse reported a pretax loss of 484 million Swiss francs ($498 million) in the first quarter of 2016, compared to a reported pretax profit of 1.5 billion Swiss francs in the same period last year. Shares in the lender rallied, finishing 5 percent up.

Dutch lender ING jumped over 2.5 percent after it said its underlying net result was 842 million euros in the first three months of the year, falling 29 percent year-on-year due to higher "regulatory expenses".

Meanwhile, French bank Natixis reported a 30 percent year-on-year fall in net income for the first quarter of 2016 due to weakness in its investment banking division, sending shares to close almost 7 percent down.

Oil markets remain a key focus as prices pushed higher, boosted by supply disruptions and outages in Canada and Nigeria.

Despite fluctuations, Brent trading over 3.5 percent higher at $45.21 per barrel around Europe's close, while U.S. crude saw a strong tick-up, hovering at $44.44.

The stabilization in oil helped keep U.S. markets in positive territory around Europe's close.

Elsewhere in the commodities space, mining stocks saw a strong recovery on Tuesday following a solid rise in most metal prices.

Shares of London-listed Anglo American soared, closing up 4.7 percent after Renaissance Capital raised its price target.

ArcelorMittal jumped 2.7 percent after Barclays raised its price target on the steelmaker.

Nokia plunges 7.2%, while Pandora shimmers

Elsewhere, earnings season continued to shift sentiment. Shares of Danish jewelry maker Pandora rallied 11.2 percent after it posted market-beating revenue and profit. This gave a boost to fellow luxury stock, Hugo Boss.

Easyjet ended 2.7 percent up, despite swinging to a loss for the first half of the year, citing "external shocks to demand from terrorism events relating to Sharm el-Sheikh, Paris and Brussels".

Other transportation stocks were also higher, including Air France-KLM and Ryanair.

K+S also jumped 2.7 percent, after the German fertilizer provider reiterated its 2016 outlook and reported a smaller-than-expected fall in first quarter operating profit, Reuters reported.

On the other hand, net sales at Nokia's key networks business fell 8 percent year-on-year to 5.2 billion euros ($5.9 billion), missing a market consensus of 5.5 billion euros. Shares sank to the bottom of benchmarks, down 7.2 percent.

In the insurance space, Munich Re shares fell over 2 percent after it cut its full-year profit guidance to the lower end of its range after a slump in first quarter profit.

Staffing group Adecco reported earnings before interest, taxes, and amortization down 5 percent in the first quarter, sending shares down 5 percent.

Greek stocks climb

Euro zone finance ministers, who met on Monday, have offered Greece debt relief in the form of longer grace periods and bond maturities from 2018. That is conditional on the country delivering on all reforms agreed under its latest bailout, Reuters reported.

The news boosted several of Greece's stocks, with many of its banks rallying.

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