Saturday 19 April 2014

European shares fall; M&A failure hits Celesio

European shares

European stocks dropped in early trade today, tracking sharp losses on Wall Street following a number of disappointing earnings and outlook statements that raised concern about profit growth.

Shares in German drugs distributor Celesio tumbled 7.7pc after suitor McKesson failed to get enough shares for its takeover bid to succeed.

In early trade, the FTSEurofirst 300 index of top European shares was down 1.1pc at 1,310.50 points.

Wall Street's S&P 500 slid 1.3pc after a number of mid-sized companies posted weak earnings or forecasts.

According to Thomson Reuters data, almost 10 out of every 11 companies that have had pre-announcements for the current earnings season from S&P 500 companies have lowered estimates.

"We've been focusing a lot on macro data, but the real test is coming, with the earnings season starting, and the market might have been too optimistic about earnings recovery," a Paris-based equity and exchange-traded funds (ETFs) trader said.

The focus will be on JPMorgan and Wells Fargo , set to post quarterly results before the opening bell on Wall Street on Tuesday.

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