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European stocks dropped to a two- month low as the euro area entered its second recession in four years.
A report in Luxembourg showed that the combined economy of the 17-nation euro area contracted in the third quarter. Gross domestic product fell 0.1 percent, matching the median forecast. It shrank 0.1 percent in second quarter. The second successive quarter of negative growth means that the economy has entered a recession.
National benchmark indexes declined in every western- European (SXXP) market except Spain. France’s CAC 40 slid 0.5 percent, while Germany’s DAX and the U.K.’s FTSE 100 both slipped 0.8 percent. Spain’s IBEX 35 added 0.3 percent.
Zurich Insurance declined 3.9 percent to 223.10 Swiss francs. Third-quarter profit slumped 62 percent after the insurer wrote off $550 million following a review of its general-insurance business in Germany. Net income of $477 million missed the average analyst estimate of $707.5 million.
H&M fell 3 percent to 213.10 kronor. Sales at stores open a year or more slid 5 percent last month, the company said in a statement. Richard Edwards, an analyst at Citigroup Inc. in London, had forecast sales would be unchanged.
Tesco Plc, Europe’s biggest retailer by market capitalization, slipped 1.6 percent to 316.3 pence.
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