(Reuters) – European shares opened higher on Wednesday on a boost from Danish drugmaker Novo Nordisk, while hopes grew that the U.S. Federal Reserve would signal a slowdown in its aggressive policy tightening cycle later in the day.

The pan-European STOXX 600 index rose 0.3% by 0812 GMT, with Novo Nordisk jumping 4.5% as it raised its full-year earnings outlook on strong sales of diabetes treatment Ozempic and also reported a better-than-expected profit.

European healthcare stocks gained 0.9%, while banks rose 0.4% ahead of what is expected to be the Fed’s fourth straight 75-basis-point increase to interest rates.

Still, attention will mostly be on whether the U.S. central bank might pivot its policy.

Traders are pricing in a 50-bp hike in December, while several parts of the U.S. Treasury yield curve point to a possible recession. [FEDWATCH] [US/]

(Reporting by Shreyashi Sanyal in Bengaluru; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)