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European stocks declined from their highest level in almost four weeks as U.S. lawmakers continued to discuss raising the federal government’s debt limit. U.S. index futures gained, while Asian shares fluctuated.
The Stoxx Europe 600 Index retreated 0.3 percent to 313.93 at 8:51 a.m. in London after Fitch Ratings put the U.S. on watch for a possible credit downgrade late yesterday. Standard & Poor’s 500 Index futures gained 0.5 percent, while the MSCI Asia Pacific Index slipped less than 0.1 percent.
The Republican House of Representatives Speaker John Boehner attempted to influence the outcome of the fiscal showdown with a proposal that would reopen the government through Dec. 15, rather than Jan. 15 as the Senate plans. The U.S. will exhaust extraordinary measures to keep borrowing below its debt ceiling tomorrow, according to the Treasury.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell restarted negotiations late yesterday on a deal to end the government shutdown and prevent a default.
“Senator Reid and Senator McConnell have re-engaged in negotiations and are optimistic that an agreement is within reach,” a spokesman for Reid said in a statement. They had suspended their talks, while they waited for the House to act on Boehner’s plan.
Danone fell 3.6 percent to 51.11 euros. The Paris-based company said baby-nutrition revenue fell in the three months through September after recalling infant formula in Asia. Like-for-like revenue gained 4.2 percent from a year earlier, Danone said in a statement, missing the median of 15 analysts’ estimates of 4.8 percent.
LVMH declined 5 percent to 137.60 euros. The Paris-based company said late yesterday that revenue advanced to 7.02 billion euros ($9.5 billion) from 6.9 billion euros. Analysts had predicted 7.24 billion euros, according to the median of 15 estimates compiled by Bloomberg. Sales climbed 8 percent, excluding acquisitions, disposals and currency moves. That missed the 10 percent gain predicted by analysts.
Publicis Groupe SA slipped 1.9 percent to 58.53 euros. The company, which plans to merge with Omnicom Group Inc. to form the world’s biggest advertising firm, reported slower third-quarter sales growth because of weaker spending on adverts in China. Revenue rose 3 percent to 1.68 billion euros from a year earlier, according to a statement. Excluding currency fluctuations and acquisitions, sales climbed 3.5 percent. They had increased 5 percent in the previous quarter.
Ubisoft Entertainment SA sank 24 percent to 8.48 euros. Electronic Arts Inc.’s smaller French rival cut its full-year sales forecast by as much as a third and predicted an operating loss after delaying the release of two major games.
FTSE 100 6,504.59 -44.52 -0.68%
CAC 40 4,216.97 -39.05 -0.92%
DAX 8,784.1 -20.34 -0.23%
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