European shares halted a three-day slide at the open on Wednesday, helped by a rise in retailers after estimate beating German sales data and a strong showing by British supermarket Sainsbury's.
Shares in Sainsbury's rose 2.3 percent to the top of the pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 index, after the group reported a better than expected performance in the Christmas quarter. Peer Tesco, due to report on Thursday, was up 2.2 percent.
Supporting sentiment in the broader market, German retail sales rose one percent in November, beating expectations for a flat reading, data from Germany's Federal Statistics office showed on Wednesday.
The FTSEurofirst 300 index of pan-European shares was up 0.3 percent at 1,328.61 points at 0805 GMT, after shedding 3.3 percent in the previous three sessions.
All eyes were on euro zone inflation data for December due at 1000 GMT, expected to show the first annual fall in consumer prices since 2009. This was seen piling pressure on the European Central Bank to launch all-out quantitative easing at its next policy meeting on Jan 22.