News Column

European Stocks Down Sharply On Economic Jitters

May 15, 2014

BRUSSELS (Alliance News) - European stocks tumbled on Thursday amid anxiety over the pace of the eurozone recovery and downbeat earnings from US retail giant Walmart.

A surprisingly large drop in US industrial production also hurt sentiment.

Banking stocks struggled also with energy shares as crude oil prices slid below USD102 a barrel.

The Euro Stoxx 50 index of eurozone bluechip stocks dropped 1.25%.

The German DAX lost 1.1%, the UK'sFTSE 100 dropped 0.7%, while the French CAC 40 fell 1.1%.

Deutsche Post dropped 4.9% after the mail and logistics group reported first-quarter results.

Merck KGaA slipped 0.7%. The firm reported financial results.

Vivendi was down 0.8%. The media company posted a decline in first-quarter profit amid weak revenues mainly from its music business.

Old Mutual lost 4.8%. The insurer said its first-quarter gross sales increased 12% to 6.25 billion pounds from last year's 5.60 billion pounds.

Carphone Warehouse tumbled 7.5%. The telecommunications retailer reached an agreement with Dixons Retail on the terms of a recommended all-share merger of both companies.

Thomas Cook fell 10.5%. The company sees achievement milestones for fiscal 2014 more challenging due to the impact of market disruption in Egypt.

In the eurozone, seasonally adjusted gross domestic product grew only 0.2% sequentially, the same rate as seen in the fourth quarter, Eurostat reported. Economists had forecast the rate to double to 0.4%.

Meanwhile, Germany's quarterly gross domestic product growth doubled to 0.8% in the first quarter from 0.4% in the previous quarter, Destatis said. This was the biggest increase since the first quarter of 2011 and exceeded the 0.7% expected increase.

The French economy unexpectedly remained flat in the first quarter after expanding 0.2% at the end of 2013, the statistical office Insee said today. GDP was forecast to rise 0.1%.

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Source: Alliance News

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