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European stocks move lower; trade data disappoints

European stock markets edged lower on Tuesday morning, with investor sentiment weakened by new earnings reports and weaker-than-expected trade data from China and Germany.

The pan-European Stoxx 600 edged lower by 0.14 percent with most sectors moving south. Travel and leisure stocks were the worst performing sector in early deals on earnings. Paddy Power reported lower revenues in the second quarter of the year. On Monday, the betting firm saw its shares fall nearly 5 percent after announcing that Chief Executive Breon Corcoran was standing down. Shares were down by nearly 4 percent Tuesday.

InterContinental also fell about 3.5 percent in early trade after its global comparable revenue per available room dropped from the previous quarter. Nonetheless, the group reported higher profits for the first half of the year.

Household goods were also lower after new earnings releases. Pandora announced lower-than-expected profits in the second quarter. It said challenges remain in the U.S. market. Its shares were off by more than 8 percent.

U.K. housebuilder Bellway said Tuesday it sees its fiscal 2017 revenue up by 13 percent from the previous year due to higher home volume growth. The housebuilder was marginally higher in early deals.

Meanwhile, utilities jumped on earnings. The energy trading group Uniper rose above 3 percent on Tuesday after raising its profit outlook.

Nokian Renkaat hit the top of the European benchmark, up by more than 8 percent, on a strong second-quarter earnings report. The tire maker profited from higher Russian demand and a stronger ruble.

Trade data disappoints

Investors on Tuesday also digested trade data from Germany and France. For the former, June trade numbers disappointed slightly with exports dropping by 2.8 percent month-on-month in June, while imports were down 4.5 percent. In France, the current account deficit widened in June after exports declined slightly.

Asian equities had walked away from nearing a decade high after data showed lower than expected imports and exports from China in July. In renminbi terms, exports grew 11.2 percent and imports rose 14.7 percent.

Brexit woes; no need for another Fed hike

In the U.K., the British Retail Consortium reported lower sales growth in July. Retail sales were up by an annual 0.9 percent on a like-for-like basis, down from a rise of 1.2 percent in June, according to the new data out Tuesday. Meanwhile, the Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC) said Tuesday U.K. recruiters are blaming Brexit as a staff shortage worsened last month.

In the U.S., St. Louis Fed President James Bullard said Monday the central bank doesn’t need to change rates in the near term because inflation is unlikely to rise significantly, despite improvements in the labor market.

Source: CNBC

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