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European Equity Benchmarks Close Mixed; Eurozone Growth Solid in August

The broad-based major European markets were mixed in Tuesday's trading session, as financial stocks weighed down the British and French markets, while automotive stocks boosted the German exchange.

In economic news, eurozone economic growth remained solid and steady in August, according to the IHS Markit Eurozone PMI Composite Output Index, and matched July's reading of 55.7, down only marginally from the flash estimate of 55.8.

"With such robust growth being sustained into August, the region is on course to see GDP rise by 2.1% in 2017, which would represent the best performance since 2007," said Chris Williamson, Chief Business Economist at IHS Markit.

Meanwhile Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union, reported that in July, compared with June, the seasonally adjusted volume of retail trade fell 0.3% in the euro area (EA19), and 0.2% in the EU28. In June, the retail trade volume increased 0.6% in the euro area, and 0.5% in the EU28. Compared with July of 2016, the calendar adjusted retail sales index increased by 2.6% in the euro area and by 2.7% in the EU28.

Eurostat also reported that in July, compared with June, industrial producer prices remained stable in the euro area (EA19), while they increased 0.1% in the EU28. In June, prices decreased 0.2% in the euro area, and 0.3% in the EU28. Compared with July 2016, industrial producer prices rose 2.0% in the euro area, and 2.3% in the EU28.

In equities, consumer finance firm Provident Financial and investment management company Standard Life led the FTSE lower in London, falling 6.4% and 3.8%, respectively, followed by cruise line operator Carnival, down 3.6%, consumer goods company Reckitt Benckiser Group, down 2.7%, and airline operator easyJet, down 2.1%. Mining companies Fresnillo, Glencore International, and Antofagasta dropped 2.1%, 1.1%, and 1.2% respectively.

In Frankfurt, automotive stocks helped push the DAX into positive territory, as automakers BMW, Volkswagen, and Daimler, rose 1.7%, 1.9%, and 0.9% respectively, while tire maker Continental gained 0.7%. Pharmaceutical firm Merck led all gainers, climbing 2.4%, while chemicals and consumer goods company Henkel added 1.8%, and technology company Siemens added 0.9%. Meanwhile Commerzbank and Deutsche Bank lost 2.7% and 1.9% respectively.

And in Paris, banks weighed down the CAC as BNP Paribas, Credit Agricole, and Societe Generale, fell 1.9%, 1.8%, and 1.3% respectively. Steel and mining company ArcelorMittal led all decliners, dropping 2.9%, followed by telecommunications operator Orange, which closed 2% lower.

The FTSE fell 0.52%, the DAX gained 0.18%, and the CAC-40 lost 0.34%.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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