European shares rose on Monday after their worst selloff in more than a year as investors awaited clues on whether the Omicron variant of coronavirus would hamper economic recoveries and monetary tightening plans by central banks.

The pan-European STOXX 600 gained 1.0%, recovering some of Friday's 3.7% slump triggered by concerns around the newly discovered variant.

While the variant was spotted in several countries across the globe, a South African doctor who was one of the first to suspect a different strain said that symptoms were so far mild and could be treated at home.

"That news has reassured investors, but stocks, particularly in the travel sector, are going to remain volatile because of the disrupted routes, new restrictions, and overall uncertainty," said Susannah Streeter, senior investment and markets analyst at Hargreaves Lansdown (LON:HRGV).

To date, no death linked to Omicron has been reported, though further research was needed to assess its potential to escape protection against immunity induced by vaccines, the World Health Organisation said.

Travel stocks led gains in the STOXX 600, with Wizz Air, Lufthansa, TUI Group and British Airways-owner IAG (LON:ICAG) all rising more than 3% after double-digit falls on Friday on fears of fresh travel restrictions.