European shares edge down with all eyes on the Fed

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European shares edge down with all eyes on the Fed

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LONDON (Reuters) – Bourses opened slightly lower across Europe on Tuesday as traders awaited clues from the Federal Reserve on its plans to move towards unwinding its $4.2 trillion (3.11 trillion pounds) portfolio of Treasuries and mortgage-backed securities. Despite Wall Street reaching new highs yet again, shares in Europe followed Asia’s overnight caution with the pan-European STOXX <.STOXX> index down 0.2 percent. Financials were some of the only stocks trading in positive territory, as monetary tightening typically benefits lenders. The European banking index <.SX7P> was up 0.2 percent with HSBC <HSBA.L> at the top of the list with a 1 percent rise. British online grocer Ocado <OCDO.L> topped the index losers’ list with a 5.3 percent fall after the firm reported third-quarter results, saying short-term costs could increase due to investment in a new distribution centre. Shares in Belgium’s Solvay <SOLB.BR>, which agreed to sell its polyamides business to BASF <BASFn.DE> for 1.6 billion euros, declined 0.6 percent.

(Julien Ponthus)
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