European shares closed broadly higher Wednesday afternoon, as investors digested news that the U.S. is pulling out from the Iran nuclear accord.
The pan-European Stoxx 600 ended 0.57 percent higher with most sectors and major bourses trading higher.
Oil and gas stocks were the top performing sector, up by more than 2.6 percent by the end of European trade. These were supported by news that the U.S. is withdrawing from the Iran deal. President Donald Trump announced his decision late Tuesday and added that sanctions on Iran would be restored. Removing the U.S. from the accord was a campaign promise made by the president during the run-up to the 2016 election.
As a result, oil prices have been on the rise with both Brent and WTI crude moving up by around 3 percent.
On the other hand, travel and leisure stocks fell 1.1 percent on average. This was due to rising concerns over geopolitical issues, but also earnings. In particular, shares of Compass were down by nearly 5 percent after the company announced some foreign exchange impacts on its latest set of results.
A network giant in Europe looks set after Vodafone announced it is to spend 18.4 billion euros to buy European assets from John Malone's Liberty Global. Subject to approval, Vodafone will buy Liberty's operations in Germany, Romania, Hungary and the Czech Republic.
Looking at luxury, Burberry dropped more than 6 percent Wednesday. The British brand lost one of its shareholders — Albert Frere's Groupe Bruxelles Lambert sold its entire stake in the company.
Banca Popolare dell'Emilia Romagna was among the top performers in Europe, up by nearly 6 percent. This was after posting its latest results and receiving a ratings upgrade. Imcd was also higher by close to 7.5 percent after reporting a 17 percent increase in EBITA growth during the first quarter of the year.
In the United States, markets opened higher, also supported by a strong rally in oil prices.