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European shares rise at open, all eyes on central bank meetings

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(Reuters) – European shares edged higher on Monday at the start of a week packed with major central bank policy meetings, while shares of Swiss drugmaker Novartis rose after it agreed to buy U.S.-based Chinook.

The pan-European STOXX 600 index rose 0.3% by 0715 GMT.

Meetings from the U.S. Federal Reserve, the European Central Bank and the Bank of Japan are lined up for the week.

The Fed is seen holding rates steady at the end of its two-day policy meeting on Wednesday, while the ECB is expected to hike interest rates by another quarter percentage point on Thursday to tame stubborn inflation.

Novartis rose 1.1% after it said it has agreed to acquire Seattle-based biotech firm Chinook Therapeutics for up to $3.5 billion.

The European healthcare sector index was up 0.6%, while the personal & household sector index led gains with a 0.9% rise.

German sportswear maker Adidas jumped 3.1% after Bernstein raised its rating on the stock to “outperform” from “market perform”.

(Reporting by Shreyashi Sanyal in Bengaluru; editing by Eileen Soreng)

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