December 7, 2012 / 4:40 PM / 5 years ago

European shares end flat, telecom stocks fall

LONDON, Dec 7 (Reuters) - European stocks closed flat in choppy trade on Friday, as worries that U.S. politicians may fail to strike a deal to avoid growth-curbing austerity measures pushed equities off earlier highs.

The pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 index, which hit 18-month highs this week, provisionally closed flat at 1,131.88 points.

The euro zone's blue-chip Euro STOXX 50 index edged lower by 0.2 percent to 2,599.30 points.

Gains in major healthcare stocks were offset by a fall in the telecoms sector. The STOXX 600 telecoms index declined 0.6 percent, dragged down by a 2.7 percent fall in Deutsche Telekom after it cut its dividend.

"I wouldn't buy the market here. I think the best thing is to sell on rallies," said Richard Edwards, who heads trading and analytics firm HED Capital.

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