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European stocks set for best month this year, Volkswagen falls

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European stocks set for best month this year, Volkswagen falls

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LONDON (Reuters) – European stocks headed for their best monthly gains this year on Friday as the third quarter drew to a close, while Volkswagen shares sank after the German carmaker said it had to increase provisions for settlements in North America. A weakening euro has taken pressure off Europe’s equities and the exporter-heavy DAX especially, and helped investors find renewed enthusiasm for the asset class after the slow summer months. The pan-European STOXX 600 <.STOXX> steadied at a two-month high, while euro zone stocks <.STOXXE> hit their highest in three months, on track for a quarterly gain after falling back in the second quarter. Volkswagen <VOWG_p.DE> shares dropped 3.5 percent after the car manufacturer said it was increasing its provisions for settlements in North America over its diesel cheating scandal. Porsche <PSHG_p.DE> shares also fell 3.2 percent. Dutch bank ABN AMRO <ABNd.AS> rose 2.1 percent after Morgan Stanley raised its rating on the stock, saying it expected dividend payouts to increase. Covestro <1COV.DE> gained 2 percent after Bayer <BAYGn.DE> further reduced its holding in the plastics producer to under 25 percent. An upgrade to “outperform” from Exane BNP analysts boosted satellite communications firm Eutelsat <ETL.PA> up 2.5 percent.

(Reporting by Helen Reid, Editing by Julien Ponthus)
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