LONDON — European stocks closed slightly higher on Wednesday as investors monitored vaccine rollouts and coronavirus containment measures.
The pan-European Stoxx 600 ended up 0.17% provisionally, with telecoms stocks climbing 1.1% to lead gains while travel and leisure shed 1.1%.
European markets kept track of coronavirus developments in the region, with governments looking to accelerate, or to keep good momentum, in their coronavirus vaccination drives. In the meantime, lockdowns have been extended in Germany and the Netherlands.
On Tuesday, the U.S. also moved to speed up vaccinations by releasing vaccine doses it had been keeping in reserve and instead recommending that states immunize anyone aged 65 and over. Stocks on Wall Street rose marginally on Wednesday as the market struggled for direction for a second day.
Telefonica shares jumped 9.6% after the Spanish telecoms giant announced a $9.4 billion sale of phone masts to American Towers.
Meanwhile, ProSiebenSat.1 dropped almost 6% after private equity firm KKR looked to sell part of its stake in the German mass media company.
— CNBC's Eustance Huang contributed to this market report.
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