European stocks hovered near record highs on Wednesday as investors awaited data on services sector activity for the region, while optimism over speedy vaccination drives and a weaker pound helped UK equities outperform.
The pan-European STOXX 600 index fell 0.2% by 0704 GMT after closing at an all-time high of 435.26 points on Tuesday. The German DAX and France's CAC 40 were flat.
UK's exporter-heavy FTSE 100 gained 0.3% as a weaker pound lifted the dollar earners, while the domestically focussed midcap index inched towards a record high as Britain began the roll-out of Moderna's Covid-19 vaccine.
Recent market debutant Deliveroo Holdings rose 2.5% to 288 pence in its first day of unrestricted trading where retail traders take part. It has shed almost 28% since last week when it priced its initial public offering at 390 pence.
Final readings of UK and euro zone March services sector activity are due later in the day, with fresh lockdowns in several countries likely to weigh on the recovery.