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14.04.2014 17:20

European stocks close

European stocks pared earlier losses and rebounded from their worst week in a month, led by a rally in miners, while investors weighed violence in Ukraine.

The Stoxx Europe 600 Index gained 0.3 percent to 329.79 at the close in London, paring earlier declines of as much as 1 percent. The gauge lost 3.1 percent last week.

“The crisis in Ukraine is adding some volatility to the market, especially considering that there is a real economic risk if the situation escalates further,” Francois Savary, who helps oversee about $9.7 billion as chief investment officer at Reyl & Cie, said by phone from Geneva. “Thursday’s meeting will be key to see if the parties involved are able to find a diplomatic solution to deescalate the situation.”

Euro-area data showed industrial production climbed 0.2 percent in February after remaining unchanged the previous month. Economists had forecast a 0.2 percent rise.

In the U.S., retail sales rose 1.1 percent last month after gaining 0.7 percent in February, according to a Commerce Department report. The median economist forecast called for a 0.9 percent increase.

National benchmark indexes fell in 10 of 18 western-European markets. The U.K.’s FTSE 100 and Germany’s DAX gained 0.3 percent, while France’s CAC 40 climbed 0.4 percent.

Basic-resource companies in the Stoxx 600 rose the most among 19 industry groups. Polymetal climbed 4.7 percent to 641 pence, and Randgold advanced 3.6 percent to 4,845 pence.

Peugeot slid 6.3 percent to 12.83 euros. Europe’s second-largest carmaker also said it will turn the Citroen unit’s DS badge into a separate brand. Operating profit from carmaking will be 2 percent of sales by 2018 and increase to 5 percent in the 2019-2023 period, Peugeot said.

Kuehne & Nagel International AG fell 2.6 percent to 119.70 Swiss francs. The world’s biggest sea-freight forwarder said sales slipped 1.3 percent to 4.13 billion francs ($4.7 billion) in the first quarter. Analysts had predicted 5.22 billion francs on average. Earnings before interest and taxes increased to 190 million francs, less than the 192 million-franc projection.

Symrise AG dropped 2.2 percent to 35.05 euros. The company has offered 1.3 billion euros ($1.8 billion) to buy Diana Group, a French flavors and pet-food additive maker. Symrise has entered into exclusive talks with owner Ardian Sarl, and the deal is expected to be completed in the third quarter, according to an April 12 statement.

STMicroelectronics NV fell 3.2 percent to 6.21 euros as UBS cut its rating on the chipmaker to sell from neutral, with analyst Gareth Jenkins citing the stock’s valuation. It traded at 47.1 times estimated earnings at the end of last week and reached 50.6 last month, as the stock climbed to its highest price since September, data compiled by Bloomberg show. The Stoxx 600 traded at 14.4.

TomTom NV, a maker of navigation devices, declined 3.9 percent to 4.69 euros after UBS recommended selling the shares, citing valuations again.

Market Focus

  • The eurozone started the third quarter on a solid footing, according to PMI survey data
  • Earnings Season in U.S.: Major Reports of the Week
  • German private sector output growth slowed for the second month running in July
  • ECB's Mersch says as conditions normalise, it is unlikely that uncoventional policies will remain necessary
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