European shares finished the day down 1.4 percent with investors seemingly concerned the recent rally may have made share prices too strong compared with the prospects for companies’ increasing their earnings. Banks were big losers and commodity stocks fell as metals and crude oil prices retreated.
Airlines were hit by IATA’s prediction of falling ticket sales this year. Speculation that the US central bank, the Federal Reserve, may have to raise interest rates sooner than anticipated pushed up the value of the dollar against a basket of currencies. The stronger dollar helped pull down oil prices. Volkswagen rose on a report the gulf state of Qatar is close to a deal that will help Porsche, VW’s biggest shareholder, cope with its nine billion euro debt.