Friday 23 March 2018

European stocks fall on weak US data

A Chinese yuan currency sign
A Chinese yuan currency sign


European shares fell yesterday, dropping back from their highest levels since January, hit by weak US data and a slump in France's Ingenico Group, which led Europe's tech sector lower.

The pan-European STOXX 600 index fell 0.3pc, after reaching its highest level since January in the previous session.

The market fell away in afternoon trade after the US ISM services index dropped by the most since the financial crisis.

The dollar fell against the euro, hitting exporters, as the chances of a US rate increase in September receded further.

The growth-sensitive banking sector fell the most, losing 1.7pc. Banks have been under pressure, their profitability undermined by low interest rates.

The oil and gas sector dropped 0.9pc, the next biggest decline, as Brent crude slipped below $47 a barrel. Oil prices dropped as hopes faded for imminent action to reduce a global supply glut.

Underscoring investor skittishness and low tolerance for earnings disappointments, French payments firm Ingenico Group plummeted 13.6pc in heavy volume, after cutting its full-year targets following a "sudden and significant decline" in US sales.

Ireland's ISEQ Overall Index shed 0.78pc to end the session at 6,265.53.

Bank of Ireland took another hit, falling 2.5pc to just over 19 cent. It declined over 4pc on Monday.

Shares in hotel group Dalata fell 3.4pc to €4.15. It reported first-half results that were slightly ahead of analyst expectations, but said the decline in sterling continues to have a significant negative impact on the euro-translated earnings from its UK hotels.

The UK's FTSE-100 was 0.78pc lower. Germany's DAX was up 0.14pc and France's CAC-40 was down 0.24pc.

Irish Independent

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