© Reuters. Electronic screens display stock trading activity on the German DAX Index at the Frankfurt Stock Exchange on Wednesday. Photography: Reuters.
(Reuters) – European stocks fell for the fifth day in a row on Wednesday, as real estate stocks were damaged by negative statements from brokerage firms regarding property owners in Britain, while recent measures affected the shares of Dutch insurance companies and the Swiss bank UBS.
The European index fell 0.2 percent, closing at its lowest level in six months.
The European real estate sector index fell by 2 percent.
Shares of Land Securities, British Land and Derwent London fell between 3.4 percent and 4.3 percent.
Overall, market sentiment remained pessimistic with investors concerned about the possibility of major central banks keeping interest rates high for an extended period, and the decline in China’s real estate sector also added to the negative sentiment.
The STOXX 600 index appeared to be on its way to incurring its first quarterly loss in four years, while the German index became among the worst performers at the regional level.
Meanwhile, shares in Dutch insurance companies took a hit after court rulings in a years-long battle over investment-linked products raised the prospect of huge damages claims.
NN shares fell 18.8 percent, and ASR shares lost 14.2 percent.
UBS Bank shares fell about three percent after a report that the US Department of Justice increased scrutiny of suspected cases of non-compliance with the rules, which helped clients from Russia avoid sanctions.
On the other hand, H&M shares rose 3.4 percent after the world’s second-largest clothing retailer announced a slightly larger-than-expected increase in its quarterly profits, supported by cost cuts.
(Prepared by Rehab Alaa for the Arabic Bulletin)
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