* FTSEurofirst 300 up 0.1 pct at 1,185.46
* HSBC and StanChart leads banks higher on Citi note
* Danske falls on capital concerns
* M&A chatter lifts Moeller, Kabel, TNT,
By David Brett
LONDON, June 18 (Reuters) - Banks led gains in European
shares on Tuesday with HSBC and Standard Chartered boosted by a
positive Citigroup note, while speculation over monetary policy
tweaks in the United States and China created an uncertain
backdrop to trading.
Europe's biggest bank HSBC and peer Standard
Chartered each added more than 2 percent after
Citigroup wrote the two banks should benefit from any easing in
the U.S. Federal Reserve's bond-buying programme.
Danske Banke missed out on the banking rally,
falling 5.7 percent after Danish regulators ordered the
country's biggest financial institution to set aside more
By 1049 GMT, the broader FTSEurofirst 300 was up
1.13 points, or 0.1 percent at 1,185.46, rebounding off a
session low of 1,178.41.
Markets were volatile as investors awaited news from the
Fed, which is meeting over the next two days to discuss, among
other things, how long to stick with the stimulus measures that
have helped inflate global stock markets.
Adding to the uncertainty, traders cited a Wall Street
Journal report quoting an executive at a state-owned Chinese
bank as saying the central bank could ease policy by the end of
Wednesday by cutting lenders' required reserves rates.
A rise in Germany's ZEW investor morale helped keep the
FTSEurofirst 300 in the black.
Results and acquisition news were in focus as Britain's
Whitbread added 2.6 percent, hitting an all-time high
after posting a 3.1 percent rise in first quarter sales.
Kabel Deutschland rose 3.9 percent after it said
Liberty Global made a takeover offer for the German
cable operator, raising the possibility of a bidding contest
TNT Express climbed 1.8 percent, with traders
citing market speculation that the Dutch mail delivery group may
be the subject of a bid from Deutsche Post.