August 21, 2012 / 2:27 PM / 5 years ago

Banks help European shares extend gains in light trade

LONDON, Aug 21 (Reuters) - European shares extended gains in choppy, light afternoon trade on Tuesday, with euro zone banks th e best-performers as yields on Italian and Spanish benchmark bonds fell further.

Italian bank Intesa Sanpaolo was the top riser, gaining 5.3 percent, with Germany’s Deutsche Bank and France’s Credit Agricole up 5.3 percent and 4.8 percent respectively.

The FTSEurofirst 300 index was up 0.4 percent at 1,109.66 points by 1419 GMT, in light trading volume of 35 percent of its full day average with little more than one hour to go until the closing bell.

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