Europe stocks knocked lower by Cyprus, U.S. data

PARIS, April 12 Fri Apr 12, 2013 11:36am EDT

PARIS, April 12 (Reuters) - European shares sank on Friday, reversing nearly half of the week's gains, knocked lower by rekindled worries about Cyprus's bailout plan and an unexpected drop U.S. monthly retail sales.

The FTSEurofirst 300 index of top European shares provisionally closed 1 percent lower at 1,181.49 points, while the euro zone's blue chip Euro STOXX 50 index fell 1.6 percent to 2,631.42 points.

Early on Friday, Luxembourg Finance Minister Luc Frieden warned that Europe and the International Monetary Fund could not increase their 10 billion euro contribution to a bailout for Cyprus despite news that the cost for the debt-stricken island could be bigger than initially estimated.

"People are realising that the Cypriot bailout is not a done deal at all, and that's pouring cold water on risk appetite seen earlier in the week. Cyprus is basically back to square one," said Christian Jimenez, fund manager and president of Diamant Bleu Gestion, in Paris.

Euro zone banking stocks tumbled, with Germany's Deutsche Bank losing 3.6 percent and Italy's Banco Popolare falling 3.9 percent.

Miners were also hammered, with Eurasian down 3 percent and Randgold Resources down 4.6 percent, as metal prices like gold and copper sharply fell.

Bucking the trend, Telecom Italia added 3.8 percent after saying it is looking at a possible tie-up with Hutchison Whampoa as well as a potential spin-off of its fixed-line domestic network.

Comments (0)
This discussion is now closed. We welcome comments on our articles for a limited period after their publication.