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European stocks were little changed as Vodafone Group Plc led telecommunications shares higher and as investors waited for a U.S. Senate committee to vote on a resolution enabling President Barack Obama to attack Syria.
A Eurostat report today confirmed that second-quarter gross domestic product in the 17-nation euro area grew 0.3 percent from the previous three-month period. That matched the median estimate of economists.
National benchmark indexes advanced in 12 of the 18 western-European markets today. France’s CAC 40 and Germany’s DAX gained 0.2 percent. The U.K.’s FTSE 100 rose 0.1 percent. The number of shares changing hands in Stoxx 600-listed companies was 12 percent greater than the average of the past 30 days, data compiled by Bloomberg showed.
Italy’s FTSE MIB Index declined 1.4 percent as the Repubblica newspaper reported that former Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi may consider withdrawing his support for the coalition government.
Ryanair slumped 13 percent to 5.87 euros. The Dublin-based company said that full-year net income may fall short of its forecast range of 570 million euros ($753 million) to 600 million euros. Chief Executive Officer Michael O’Leary said greater competition on prices and increased capacity had contributed to lower fares in September, October and November.
EasyJet Plc, Europe’s second-biggest discount airline, sank 5.1 percent to 1,215 pence. An index of travel and leisure companies lost 1.6 percent, the largest decline of the 19 industry groups in the Stoxx 600.
ProSiebenSat.1 dropped 5 percent to 30.68 euros. KKR and Permira are selling a stake valued at more than 760 million euros through Lavena, a holding company. The private-equity investors will still hold about 33 percent of ProSiebenSat.1 after the sale. Lavena said it is selling the 25 million shares through an accelerated bookbuild.
Iliad SA fell 2.7 percent to 179 euros. Xavier Niel, the founder of the French low-cost mobile-phone carrier, sold a 3 percent stake valued at about 320 million euros based on yesterday’s closing price. Niel still has a controlling holding of 55.3 percent, Paris-based Iliad said in a statement.
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