* FTSEurofirst 300 down 0.3 pct, Euro STOXX 50 down 0.6 pct
* Spain, Italy lead losses on weak data, Iberdrola placing
* LVMH leads rally in luxury stocks after update
By Francesco Canepa
LONDON, April 10 Spanish and Italian stocks led
European shares lower on Thursday as investors cashed in on the
star performers this year after some disappointing data and more
jittery market conditions.
Spain's Ibex 35 and Italy's FTSE MIB, the
best performers among major European indexes this year, had
fallen 1.3 percent and 0.8 percent respectively by 1457 GMT,
lagging smaller losses for their peers in Britain,
Germany and France.
Sentiment on Italy was clouded by weaker-than-expected
industrial output data, while a discounted share placement by
Iberdrola triggered a selloff in Spanish utilities.
Spanish and Italian shares have rallied more than 25 percent
since June 2013, leaving them trading at the highest valuation
versus pan-European stocks since 2006, Datastream data showed.
Market volatility in recent weeks - triggered by economic
and geopolitical concerns in emerging economies from Ukraine to
China at a time when the Federal Reserve is tightening its purse
strings - was leading some investors to take profits on the best
"For people who've called that trade ... we believe it is
prudent to err on the side of caution and take some profit,"
Arran Lamont, equity trading strategist at Citi, said.
"At the moment macro issues are clouding the view somewhat,
and accordingly we are adjusting for a more cautious period of
time in the short term."
The pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 index fell 0.3
percent to 1,333.52 points while the euro zone blue chip Euro
STOXX 50 index fell 0.6 percent to 3,164.58 points.
Luxury goods makers surged, however, as Louis Vuitton owner
LVMH posted better-than-expected quarterly sales in a
key division, easing concerns over the potential impact of
turmoil in emerging markets.
"Given the tough trading conditions highlighted by soft
luxury peers - we believe these results are reassuring,"
Barclays analysts wrote in a note.
Shares in LVMH rose 3.3 percent, Christian Dior
advanced 2.2 percent, while Richemont progressed by 1.3
Europe bourses in 2014: link.reuters.com/pap87v
Asset performance in 2014: link.reuters.com/gap87v
Today's European research round-up
(Additional reporting by Tricia Wright; Editing by Susan