European stocks fell on Thursday, trimming some of the sharp gains made in the previous session, as lower-than-expected results from Swatch Group AG and Deutsche Bank AG rattled investors.
The Stoxx Europe 600 Index was down 0.2 percent at 08:17 a.m. in London. The index gained 0.9 percent on Wednesday, as industrial shares advanced on earnings reports, while positive data from China and the U.S. helped lift stocks most sensitive to economic growth.
Shares in Reckitt Benckiser Group Plc rose 4 percent. The group is in talks to buy baby-formula maker Mead Johnson Nutrition Co. for about $16.7 billion. Shares in Deutsche Bank AG were down 3.4 percent after it reported fourth-quarter trading revenue that missed analystsâ€™ estimates as concern about the companyâ€™s finances weighed on clients. Swatch Group AG fell 3 percent after posting its lowest profitability in at least 20 years and cut its dividend as the industry struggled to find buyers for all the timepieces it produced. For Credit Suisse equity strategists, there are mounting signs of complacency in equity markets following the recent rally, particularly in sectors seen as cyclical, which have already outperformed defensive sectors by 24 percent, they wrote in note.