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Europe Markets: European stocks set for 13-day high as SocGen, Total march higher

European stocks rose for a third straight session on Thursday, with upbeat earnings news from French lender Société Générale SA and oil giant Total SA giving heart to traders.

The Stoxx Europe 600 index SXXP, +0.23% climbed 0.4% to 365.37, setting it on track for its highest close since Jan. 27.

Equity markets in Europe have been trading in tight ranges in recent days, as investors absorb heightened political risks and a deluge of earnings reports. The pan-European index, however, still managed to eke out gains on Tuesday and Wednesday.

“So far this year, equity markets across Europe, for all the ups and downs seen in the last few weeks, aren’t too far from where they started the year, as investors try to look through the fog of politics in France, Germany, the Netherlands, as well as the banking issues in Italy and the possibility of new elections there, as well as the perennial problem child of Greece,” said Michael Hewson, chief market analyst at CMC Markets, in a note.

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