Stock indices traded lower on the economic data from the Eurozone. Markit Economics released final services purchasing managers' index (PMI) for the Eurozone on Wednesday. Eurozone's final services PMI remained unchanged at 53.1 in April, down from the preliminary reading of 53.2.
Eurozone's final composite output index fell to 53.0 in April from 53.1 in March, in line with the preliminary reading.
The decline was mainly driven by a fall in output prices.
"The final PMI data confirm the earlier flash estimate that the Eurozone economy grew at a steady but unspectacular annual rate of 1.5% at the start of the second quarter," Chief Economist at Markit Chris Williamson said.
"However, while still tepid, the sustained Eurozone growth contrasts with slowdowns in the US and UK, suggesting the ECB's more aggressive stimulus is helping to drive a steady recover," he added.
Germany's final services PMI fell to 54.5 in April from 55.1 in March, down from the preliminary reading of 54.6. The index was mainly driven by a slower growth in employment, while backlogs of work declined.
France's final services PMI increased to 50.6 in April from 49.9 in March, down from the preliminary reading of 50.8. The index was mainly driven by rises in new business, backlogs of work and input prices.
Eurostat released its retail sales data for the Eurozone on Wednesday. Retail sales in the Eurozone decreased 0.5% in March, missing expectations for a 0.1% fall, after a 0.3% gain in February. February's figure was revised up from a 0.2% increase.
Non-food sales decreased 0.5% in March, food, drinks and tobacco sales slid 1.3%, while automotive fuel sales were down 0.4%.
On a yearly basis, retail sales in the Eurozone climbed 2.1% in March, missing forecasts of a 2.5% gain, after a 2.7% increase in February. February's figure was revised up from a 2.4% rise.
Non-food sales gained 2.1% year-on-year in March, gasoline sales jumped 2.5%, while food, drinks and tobacco sales rose 1.5%.
Markit's and the Chartered Institute of Purchasing & Supply's construction PMI for the U.K. dropped to 52.0 in April from 54.2 in March, missing expectations for a decrease to 54.0. It was the lowest level since June 2013. The decline was mainly driven by a drop in new work.
"UK construction firms reported their worst month for almost three years in April, meaning that the first quarter slowdown is unlikely to prove temporary," Senior Economist at Markit, Tim Moore, said.
"Softer growth forecasts for the UK economy alongside uncertainty ahead of the EU referendum appear to have provided reasons for clients to delay major spending decisions until the fog has lifted," he added.
According to the British Retail Consortium (BRC), the U.K. shop prices declined by 1.7% year-on-year in April, after a 1.7% decline in March.
The decline was mainly driven by a drop in non-food prices, which plunged 2.9% year-on-year in April. Food prices rose at an annual rate of 0.1% in April.
Indexes on the close:
Name Price Change Change %
FTSE 100 6,112.02 -73.57 -1.19 %
DAX 9,828.25 -98.52 -0.99 %
CAC 40 4,324.23 -47.75 -1.09 %