European shares hit two-week high on hopes of smooth Brexit

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BENGALURU (Oct 15): European shares climbed to a two-week high on Tuesday, as markets cheered comments from the European Union's chief Brexit negotiator that a deal with Britain over the terms of their divorce was still possible this week.

The pan-European STOXX 600 index rose 0.6% by 0709 GMT with some British banks leading gains.

The UK-focused midcap FTSE 250 gained 0.8%, while Dublin's ISEQ rose 1.5%.

Michel Barnier's remarks on Brexit gave investors fresh hopes that Britain would be able to clinch a deal to ensure a smooth exit from the bloc on Oct 31.

Recruiter Hays Plc jumped 5.5% and was the biggest gainer on the benchmark index, after the company reported flat first-quarter net fees as strong hiring in the United States and China offset a drop in the United Kingdom.