European shares joined a global rally and finished Wednesday up over 2%.
Oil prices slid as a US government report showed larger-than-expected increases in inventories of fuel. That calmed inflation worries. Airlines and retails benefited from cheaper crude, while good results boosted VW, Peugeot Citroen and Fiat
Banks enjoyed their best day in four months, ahead of a vote on a US housing market rescue bill. Britain’s HBOS surged nearly 17% on market talk of bid interest from BBVA of Spain.
Mobile phone group Vodafone rose after announcing a surprise share buyback programme.