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July 21 (Reuters) – A slew of upbeat updates from European blue-chip firms helped the region’s benchmark index rise on Wednesday and further recover from Monday’s sharp losses, while travel stocks roared back after weeks of declines.

The pan-European STOXX 600 index rose 0.7% by 0718 GMT and travel and leisure stocks jumped 3.2% after recently getting hammered by worries about a resurgence in virus cases.

In corporate earnings, Dutch semiconductor equipment maker rose 4% after it raised its 2021 sales outlook and announced a new share buyback plan.

Swiss drugmaker Novartis added 2.1% as its second-quarter core net income beat market expectations, boosted by its key drug brands.

British fashion retailer Next jumped 8.5% to the top of STOXX 600 after it raised its full-year profit forecast.

Among decliners, German business software group SAP slid jumped 3.9% despite raising its outlook for the second time this year.

Mercedes-Benz maker Daimler AG fell 1.1% after it warned that a global shortage of semiconductor chips will dent car sales in the second half of 2021. (Reporting by Sruthi Shankar in Bengaluru; Editing by Arun Koyyur)

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