European Stocks Decline as Air Liquide Leads Chemicals Lower

European stocks retreated, snapping two-days of gains, as miners and chemical companies tumbled.

BHP Billiton Ltd. and Glencore Plc dropped at least 2.4 percent amid renewed concern about China after President Xi Jinping said the world’s second-largest economy faces “considerable downward pressure.” France’s Air Liquide SA paced losses among chemical stocks, falling 4.8 percent after agreeing to buy U.S. rival Airgas Inc. for an enterprise value of $ 13.4 billion. Tullow Oil Plc led oil-and-gas companies lower, falling 1.9 percent.

The Stoxx Europe 600 Index slipped 0.6 percent to 377.47 at 8:09 a.m. in London. France’s CAC 40 slid the most among western-European markets, losing 0.8 percent after a shootout between police and suspects in Friday’s Paris terror attacks.

Investors are also awaiting minutes from the Federal Reserve due after the close of European trading to gauge the likelihood of an increase in borrowing costs next month. U.S. inflation data yesterday bolstered the case for higher interest rates.

Source : Bloomberg