Friday, August 16 12:25:48
European shares fell for a second day today, after reaching two-year highs this week, as investors grew nervous that the U.S. Federal Reserve will start to withdraw stimulus next month.
Several traders, however, said they remained confident on prospects for European equities on a longer-term basis, reinforced by data this week showing the euro zone had pulled out of recession.
They expect the market will rebound after a possible pull-back in September if expectations that the Fed will start trimming its stimulus programme - which has helped drive this year's stock rally - mount.
The pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 index, which fell 1 percent on Thursday in its biggest one-day drop in six weeks, was down 0.2 percent at 1,225.11 points in mid-session trade.
The STOXX Europe 600 index slipped 0.1 percent to 305.01 points and the euro zone's blue-chip Euro STOXX 50 index - which hit a two-year high this week at 2,855.89 points - was flat at 2,836.19 points.
Global equity markets have slipped over the last month on the view that the U.S. economy might be strong enough for the Fed to start scaling back its stimulus programme.
Michel Juvet, chief investment officer at Swiss bank Bordier, said that while he felt the U.S stock market was set for a pullback, he remained more confident over the prospects for European equities. (Reuters)