PARIS, April 12 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.