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* STOXX 600 down 0.3 percent after hitting one-week high
* Volkswagen rises after 23,000 German job-cut deal
* Bank sector weighed down by weak Italy lenders
By Danilo Masoni
MILAN, Nov 18 European shares wavered on Friday,
with a strong dollar hitting miners but helping export-oriented
auto stocks, while Volkswagen was further boosted after it stuck
a deal to cut thousands of jobs.
The STOXX 600 fell 0.3 percent after rising earlier in the
session to a one week high. The pan-European index was weighed
down by weaker mining and energy stocks, which pulled back after
strong gains on Thursday.
Auto stocks were broadly higher as the dollar rose to its
highest level since 2003, powered by expectations of a rate
increase in the U.S. next month and expectations of fiscal
stimulus under Donald Trump's administration.
Volkswagen rose 1 percent. Europe's biggest car
maker unveiled a deal with unions to cut 23,000 jobs in Germany
to help achieve 3.7 billion euros in annual savings by 2020 to
turn around its core brand and help fund a shift to electric and
self-driving cars following its emissions scandal.
"It was pretty clear that Volkswagen has been working on
such a plan. Nonetheless, it was unclear if the company would be
able to reach an agreement with the unions... which is clearly
good news," said Tim Schuldt, analyst at equinet Bank.
Investors, meanwhile, have turned more cautious in assessing
the possible impact of Trump for European equities.
The STOXX 600 has risen 1.2 percent since the Republican
outsider won, as expectations of fiscal stimulus under his
administration propelled cyclical stocks, but falls in income
stocks such as utilities have meant the index remains within the
tight range it has been moving in for the past 16 weeks.
Europe's basic resources index, which includes big
London-listed miners, was the biggest sectoral loser, down 2
percent, following gains in the previous session. While hopes
that Trump's infrastructure plans could boost demand for metals,
their prices, which are denominated in dollars, have been hit by
the surge in the U.S. currency.
In the construction sector, LafargeHolcim rose 2.4
percent after the building materials giant cut its mid-term
profit outlook but sweetened the pill by saying it planned an
improved payout for shareholders as well as 1 billion Swiss
francs worth of share buybacks.
Among top losers were Italian banking sector stocks which
have come under pressure because of jitters ahead of next
month's referendum on constitutional reform which could unseat
Prime Minister Matteo Renzi. Banco Popolare, UniCredit
<CRDI.MI and Intesa Sanpaolo were all down more than
3.8 percent. Concerns over higher loan provisions also weighed.
Nibe Industrier was the biggest gainer on the
STOXX, up 4.6 percent, after Kepler Cheuvreux raised its price
target on the heat pump maker.
(Reporting by Danilo Masoni Editing by Jeremy Gaunt)