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Europe stocks down 20% in first half of 2008


Europe stocks down 20% in first half of 2008


After a day of volatile trading, European stocks finished the session higher, tracking Wall Street which picked up after a regional measure of US business activity came in better than expected.

But the region’s shares still ended the first half of the year with a 20% decline.

Off the back of higher oil prices, energy producers rose, led by BP, StatoilHydro and Total.

Mining companies benefited from higher metals prices and food producers were also big gainers.

France Telecom was up 7.2% after withdrawing its unsolicited bid to buy TeliaSonera while the Scandinavian phone company’s share price slumped.

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