Europe’s STOXX 600 index fell on Thursday, led by declines in shares of Swedish group H&M after dismal earnings, with investors awaiting a reading on German inflation data for clues on interest rate hikes by the European Central Bank.
The continent-wide STOXX 600 index was down 1.1% by 0708 GMT, failing to track a 2% surge on Wall Street overnight and as the boost provided by the Bank of England’s emergency bond buying move fizzled out.
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H&M slid 6.9% after the world’s second-biggest fashion retailer reported a significant drop in its third-quarter pretax profit amid cost inflation, slowing consumer spending and one-off expenses related to its exit from Russia.
The wider STOXX retailers index dipped 4.1%, most among all the sectoral indexes.
Germany’s DAX index fell 0.9% ahead of a preliminary reading on the country’s inflation data due later in the day.
Consumer prices, harmonized to make them comparable with inflation data from other European Union countries (HICP), is expected to increase by 10% on the year in September, following a 8.8% rise in August.
The hot inflation figure would come at a time when several ECB policymakers are backing another large rate hike–of as much as 75 basis points–in October to combat surging price pressures.
The ECB has raised rates by a combined 125 basis points over its past two meetings.
Euro zone economic sentiment data for this month is also scheduled at 1000 GMT. (Reporting by Devik Jain in Bengaluru; Editing by Savio D’Souza)