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Stock indices closed mixed as weaker-than-expected PMIs from the Eurozone weighed on markets. Eurozone's preliminary manufacturing PMI decreased to 51.9 in April from 52.2 in March, missing expectations for a rise to 52.6.
Eurozone's preliminary services PMI declined to 53.7 in April from 54.2 in March. Analysts had expected the index to climb to 54.5.
Germany's preliminary manufacturing PMI fell to 51.9 in April from 52.8 in March, missing forecasts of an increase to 53.1.
Germany's preliminary services PMI decreased to 54.4 in April from 55.4 in March, missing expectations for a gain to 55.6.
The decline was driven by lower new orders and by a rise in prices.
France's preliminary manufacturing PMI was down to 48.4 in April from 48.8 in March, missing forecasts of a rise to 49.4.
France's preliminary services PMI dropped to 50.8 in April from 52.4 in March, missing expectations for a gain to 52.5.
The Greek debt crisis remains in focus. Greece is running out of cash, and it needs a new tranche of loans. The Greek government hopes to unlock a new tranche of loans at the Eurogroup meeting on April 24. Some European officials expressed concerns that an agreement between Greece and its creditors will be signed this week.
The Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras met German Chancellor Angela Merkel ahead of the EU summit in Brussels today. The exact extent or nature of the conversation was not immediately known.
Retail sales in the U.K. decreased 0.5% in March, missing expectations for a 0.4% rise, after a 0.6% gain in February. February's figure was revised down from a 0.7% increase.
It was the first decline in six months.
The decrease was driven by a drop in fuel sales. Fuel sales plunged 6.2%, the biggest drop since April 2012.
On a yearly basis, retail sales in the U.K. climbed 4.2% in March, missing forecasts of 5.4% increase, after a 5.4% rise in February. February's figure was revised down from a 5.7% gain.
The public sector net borrowing in the U.K. rose to £6.74 billion in March from £4.8 billion in February, missing expectations for a rise to £6.6 billion. February's figure was revised down from £6.2 billion.
Indexes on the close:
Name Price Change Change %
FTSE 100 7,053.67 +25.43 +0.36 %
DAX 11,723.58 -143.79 -1.21 %
CAC 40 5,178.91 -32.18 -0.62 %
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