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European stocks dropped the most this month as the World Bank cut its East Asian growth forecast and euro-area finance ministers meet to discuss the region’s debt crisis.
The World Bank said growth in developing East Asia, which excludes Japan and India, will probably ease to 7.2 percent this year from 8.3 percent in 2011. That is the slowest pace since 2001, according to World Bank data, and lower than a forecast in May of 7.6 percent.
European finance ministers meet in Luxembourg today to discuss Spain’s overhaul effort and closer banking cooperation. Tomorrow, German Chancellor Angela Merkel makes her first visit to Greece since the turmoil began in 2009. The next day, Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy travels for talks with French President Francois Hollande in Paris.
Finance ministers from the 17-member euro area will discuss issues including Spain at 5 p.m. in Luxembourg today and policy makers from all 27 nations in the European Union will meet tomorrow. EU leaders gather for a summit in Brussels on Oct. 18-19.
Cookson tumbled 14 percent to 531 pence, the largest drop since November. The company said full-year results will be “materially” lower than forecast after the Engineered Ceramics division’s third-quarter performance was weaker than expected.
Michael Page lost 3 percent to 354.2 pence after saying full-year operating profit will probably be “slightly below” analysts’ projections. Hays Plc, a rival recruiter, dropped 3.4 percent to 76 pence.
Eurobank jumped 10 percent to 1.29 euros, the highest since February, after National Bank of Greece offered to acquire its domestic rival as Greece’s debt crisis forces a wave of mergers. National Bank rallied 11 percent to 2.31 euros.
FTSE 100 5,830.89 -40.13 -0.68%
CAC 40 3,414.32 -42.72 -1.24%
DAX 7,294.99 -102.88 -1.39%
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