Europe: Shares retreat
LONDON: European stocks pulled back from more than four-year highs yesterday as banking shares tumbled after Italy's credit downgrade and due to potentially austere regulatory measures in the UK.
By 1134 GMT, the FTSEurofirst 300 was down 4.98 points, or 0.4 per cent, at 1,190.22. It had closed at 1,195.20 on Friday, a level not seen since September 2008 as the prospect of continued central bank support for the global financial system supported equities.
Italy's benchmark FTSEMIB share index, which is heavily weighted towards financial stocks, was down 0.8 per cent.
It has dipped 0.4 percent year-to-date, underperforming indexes of struggling southern European peers such as Spain, whose IBEX is up 5.6 per cent in 2013. Reuters