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European stocks fall on rising trade fears

European stocks pulled back on Thursday, following a drop in Asian trading overnight as slide in Chinese markets offset optimism that a NAFTA agreement could be reached by Friday’s deadline.

Photo: Reuters

The pan-European STOXX 600 slumped 0.4 percent to 385.07.

Germany’s DAX was down 0.7 percent at 12,477.53 and France’s CAC 40 Index shed 0.2 percent to 5,492.17. The UK's FTSE 100 dipped 0.7 percent to 7,506.92.

Shares of Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield dropped 3.1 percent despite Europe’s biggest property firm posting strong profits after its purchase of Australia-based shopping centre giant Westfield.

Shares in Britain's commercial property company Intu fell 4.2 percent after Morgan Stanley downgraded the stock to underweight from equal-weight, and rival Hammerson also dropped 3.9 percent.

Europe’s real estate sector, mining stocks and autos led the decline, sliding 1.3 percent, 0.9 percent and 0.5 percent, respectively.

Bouygues soared 4.4 percent after the France-based conglomerate confirmed its full year forecast for increasing profitability as its telecoms unit improved.

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