Europe shares steady, eye gains post U.S. jobs data

LONDON, Nov 2 (Reuters) - European equities steadied on Friday but could test recent two-week highs if U.S. jobs data reassures on the health of the world's biggest economy.

The pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 was flat at 1,109.46 points, while the EuroSTOXX 50 index of euro zone blue chips edged 0.1 percent lower to 2,532.19 points, off the previous session's intra-day high of 2,541.87.

Expectations for a strong reading from the U.S. non-farm payrolls have been bolstered by a better-than-expected ADP private sector employment report and ISM manufacturing index in the previous session, with the data seen as a possible catalyst to help the EuroSTOXX 50 break out of its recent range.

``That could be the trigger ... We had a liquidity driven run (in the summer) and now the markets are waiting for earnings to confirm the new positive view, so we have a sideways range with a positive basic ground tone,'' said Petra Kerssenbrock, analyst at Commerzbank.

``Today, if the positive tone continues, we will have a new trading signal if we have new highs compared to yesterday.''