LONDON, July 30 European shares closed lower on
Wednesday, little moved by strong U.S. growth data, after weak
earnings reports from cement-makers and concerns about a
possible escalation of the conflict between Russia and Ukraine.
Holcim's and HeidelbergCement's shares
fell 4.8 percent and 2.9 percent respectively, leaving the STOXX
Europe 600 constructions and materials index down 1.4
The pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 index
provisionally closed 0.5 percent lower at 1,366.69 after a
The index extended losses in the afternoon as NATO said the
number of Russian troops and weaponry along the border with
Ukraine was increasing to "well over 12,000".
Fighting between Moscow-backed rebels and government troops
has intensified since a Malaysian airliner was shot down earlier
"(The threat of) war is the main drag on markets this
afternoon," Mike Reuter, a broker at Tradition, said.
(Reporting By Francesco Canepa; Editing by Lionel Laurent)