Earnings boost European shares; market eyes FOMC meeting

European shares are higher as better-than-expected earnings and ongoing merger news outweigh the impact of developments in Ukraine, while Asian shares trade mixed.

Markets are eyeing the start of a two-day meeting of the FOMC today, with the Fed expected to slice another $10B from its QE program. That would take the bond-buying to $45B a month. Meanwhile, the Senate is due to hold a preliminary vote this morning on the nominations of Stanley Fischer and Lael Brainard to the FOMC.

Japan closed, Hong Kong +1.4%, China +0.8%, India -0.6%.

Euro Stoxx 50 +0.5%, London +0.5%, Paris +0.1%, Frankfurt +0.6%, Milan +1.2%, Madrid +0.6%.

U.S. stock futures: Dow +0.2%. S&P +0.2%. Nasdaq +0.3%

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