* FTSEurofirst 300 off 0.3 percent
* Tech stocks weak after Google results miss
* Aggreko drops 7 percent, warns on profit
By Tricia Wright
LONDON, Oct 19 European shares dipped on Friday
after four days of gains, with sentiment dampened by
unexpectedly weak results from U.S. tech bellwether Google
The FTSEurofirst 300 was down 0.3 percent at
1116.98 by 0827 GMT, after it closed 0.2 percent higher at
1,120.56 points on Thursday, just shy of a 14-month peak of
1,122.76 hit in mid-September.
Tech stocks felt the pinch, with Google having tumbled 8
percent on Thursday after quarterly results that missed analyst
expectations as its core advertising business slowed.
Of the S&P 500 companies to have reported so far to
have reported so far, 24 percent have missed expectations,
according to data from Thomson Reuters Starmine compiled before
Thursday's earnings were factored in.
Among weak European tech issues, Nokia was down 1
percent, STMicroelectronics shed 2.1 percent, and SAP
slipped 0.4 percent.
"Company earnings remain under pressure. It is possible that
the (market) highs for the year are in," said Lex van Dam, hedge
fund manager at Hampstead Capital, which manages around $500
million of assets.
Aggreko headed the list of fallers on the
FTSEurofirst 300, down 7 percent in high volume trading, after
the temporary power provider downgraded its 2012 profit outlook
due to provisions for bad debts and adverse exchange rates.
Capital expenditure in the first half of 2013 will be below
2012 as a result of the weakening economic outlook in many of
its markets, as well as the need to absorb the fleet it built
for the London Olympics, it said.
"We believe Aggreko continues to manage its business
cautiously (the group has to date never had a material bad debt)
and we would remain hopeful of some unwind to this bad debt
provision, but this now seems unlikely to occur during the
remainder of 2012," brokers at Espirito Santo said.
After just over an hour's trade, volume in the stock was
already around three times its 90-day daily average, against the
FTSEurofirst 300 at 14.5 percent of its 90-day daily average.
The Euro STOXX 50 fell 0.5 percent to 2,561.61,
though it has managed a near 4-percent rise over the course of
the week. For the index, technical strategists urged a caution.
"Don't get too aggressively bullish just yet," Phil Roberts,
technical strategist at Barclays, said.
"It's still got a lot of resistance on the upside and whilst
that resistance is there, it's just a case of... patience," he
said, noting the index must knock out the year's high in
particular, at 2,611, "before it's in the clear".