European Stocks May Fall After U.S. Losses; Philips May Decline
April 18 (Bloomberg) -- European stocks may slide for a third day after the Dow Jones Industrial Average in the U.S. had its biggest drop in almost two years on concern about waning profits.
Royal Philips Electronics NV, Europe's largest maker of televisions, may fall after saying first-quarter earnings slumped 79 percent, missing analysts' estimates.
``Markets are going to be dragged by the declines in the U.S.,'' said Francisco Salvador, head of equities at Venture Finanzas in Madrid. ``We've seen a worsening of the sentiment towards equities in recent days. Investors have moved from seeing the glass half full to seeing it half empty.''
May futures on France's CAC 40 Index shed 69, or 1.7 percent, to 3936 at 7:47 a.m. in London. The U.K.'s FTSE 100 Index may fall 46 to 4845, according to Cantor Index, a London- based betting firm. Germany's DAX Index may decrease 66 to 4246, according to Deutsche Bank AG.
U.S. benchmarks extended losses after European exchanges closed on April 15, in a sell-off sparked by International Business Machines Corp.'s disappointing earnings report. Declines circled the globe Friday amid renewed concern that demand in the world's largest economy may be slowing.
The Dow average slid 1.9 percent to 10,087.51, its worst one- day performance since May 2003. It was down 0.6 percent at the time trading in Europe finished. Japan's Nikkei 225 Stock Average headed for its biggest drop in 11 months, having lost 3.5 percent in today's session.
Philips, Europe's third-largest chipmaker, said first- quarter net income fell to 117 million euros ($151 million) from 550 million euros a year earlier, as its flat-screen venture had a loss. Sales were little changed at 6.64 billion euros.
The Dutch company had been expected to report net income of 148 million euros on sales of 6.7 billion euros, according to the median of nine analysts in a Bloomberg survey.
IBM reported April 14 that revenue across the services, software and hardware units didn't meet projections in the final two weeks of the first quarter. Profit from continuing operations was 85 cents a share in the first three months, missing the 90- cent average analyst estimate in a Thomson Financial survey.
Shares in IBM, the world's No. 1 computer-services company, dropped 8.3 percent, their largest plunge in three years.
Europe's Dow Jones Stoxx 50 Index slumped 1.4 percent on April. 14.
Reuters Group Plc, the world's largest publicly traded provider of financial information, may be active. Nasdaq Stock Market Inc. may announce today that it will buy Instinet Group Inc. for $1.8 billion from Reuters, the Financial Times said, citing unidentified people familiar with the matter.
Nasdaq spokeswoman Bethany Sherman and Instinet spokesman Stephen Austin declined to comment to Bloomberg News. Simon Walker, global head of communications at Reuters, wasn't immediately available to comment.
Bloomberg LP, the owner of Bloomberg News, competes with Reuters in providing news, information, and trading systems to the financial-services industry. Bloomberg Tradebook competes with Instinet in the business of matching stock trade orders.
Pernod Ricard SA, the world's third-largest liquor company and Fortune Brands Inc. may make a formal joint offer to buy Allied Domecq on April 21, the Financial Times reported at the weekend, without saying where it obtained its information. Florence Taron, a spokeswoman for Pernod Ricard, declined to comment on the report.
Allied Domecq Plc, the world's No. 2 drinks company, publishes first-half earnings for fiscal 2005 on April 21.
GUS Plc, Britain's second-largest retailer by market value, will buy 33 Index shops from Littlewoods Plc for 44 million pounds ($83.3 million), Liverpool, England-based Littlewoods said yesterday. GUS shares declined 25.5 pence, or 2.8 percent, to 876 pence.
Depfa Bank Plc, Europe's second-largest provider of public finance, abandoned the sale of its German unit Deutsche Pfandbriefbank AG after failing to find a buyer for more than a year. None of the bids submitted met Depfa's valuation of the unit, the bank said in a statement today.
William Hill Plc, the U.K.'s second-largest bookmaker, said it's in talks on buying Stanley Leisure Plc's U.K. and Irish betting shops.
The company postponed a proposed return of capital to shareholders pending the outcome of the talks, according to a statement from William Hill today. Stanley Leisure is the largest U.K. casino operator.
Altran Technologies SA, Europe's largest technology research consultant, said its 2004 net loss narrowed as the company posted a gain on the sale of assets. The net loss was 2.1 million euros, compared with a loss of 92 million euros a year earlier, Paris- based Altran said in a statement.
Link: http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid= ... world_news
Like Eva said in an earlier post in another forum. would you want your hard-earned Social Security contributions to be in the stock market right now?