* FTSEurofirst 300 up 0.1 pct
* Italy's MIB top regional performer, up 1.5 pct
* Miners weaken, analysts bearish on sector
By Tricia Wright
LONDON, April 29 (Reuters) - European shares edged up on
Monday after Italy finally formed a government, ending two
months of political uncertainty, although analysts saw the gains
petering out in the near term.
The FTSEurofirst 300 added 0.1 percent to 1,197.98
by 1052 GMT, having jumped 3.7 percent last week. That left it
around 1 percent shy of its 2013 peak.
"We're slightly high and dry in terms of what drives the
next leg," said Ian Williams, strategist at Peel Hunt.
"We've had the valuation expansion, and the earnings
expansion is coming through a bit slower than we might have
hoped for, so on that basis there is an argument for a
Of the 34 percent of STOXX 600 companies that have posted
quarterly earnings so far, only 46 percent have met or beaten
earnings forecasts, Thomson Reuters StarMine data shows.
The euro zone's blue-chip Euro STOXX 50 rose 0.5
percent to 2,697.20. Technical analysts expect the index to stay
within the roughly 200 point range it has traded in this year.
"When you're getting towards range highs I don't think it's
a good prospect for higher equities in the near term," Lynnden
Branigan, analyst at Barclays Capital, said. "My preference
would be still to fade any upticks in stocks."
Milan's FTSE MIB outperformed the region on Monday,
adding 1.5 percent after the Italian centre-left's Enrico Letta
was sworn in as prime minister at the weekend.
While traders see scope for further gains in Italian
equities, this was only on the basis that they have
underperformed since an inconclusive election in February.
The MIB index is up 1.8 percent year-to-date, while the
FTSEurofirst300 is 5.5 percent higher.
Italian shares are among the cheapest stocks in Europe, with
the broad MSCI Italy index trading at 9.4 times
expected earnings for the next 12 months, while the STOXX Europe
600 trades at 12.3 times expected earnings.
Miners fell as analysts issued bearish comment on
the sector, which has suffered steep falls in recent weeks.
Credit Suisse is "underweight" commodity stocks and said
that while the sector looks oversold, still it may not be due a
Signs of a slowdown in top metals consumer China has
pressured copper and gold over the last month,
and this in turn has impacted mining and commodity stocks.
Nomura, which has a weaker view on China, also maintained
its cautious stance towards the metals and mining sector, but
said it likes BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto.