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Apple disappointment hits European shares

Jan 24 2013 10:41 Reuters

Flags of the EU member states fly outside the European Parliament in Brussels. (AFP, File)

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London - European shares edged lower on Thursday, as weaker than expected figures from U.S. giant Apple fanned earnings worries in the technology sector, offsetting more bullish economic data out of China.

By 10:04, the FTSEurofirst fell 3.58 points, or 0.3% to 1 164.07. The index has been trading in a tight 10-point range since nearing two-year highs at the start 2013, with traders torn between the macro and micro developments.

Early on Thursday it was micro concerns helping drag the index lower after the world's largest tech company Apple late on Wednesday reported a third straight quarter of weaker than expected revenues. 

Tech stocks were down 0.3% with ARM, whose chip designs are used in many of Apple's products, down 1.7%, while mobile handset maker Nokia, which reports earnings at 13:00, fell 1%.

"Apple's outlook is weighing on sentiment in the tech sector and the wider market this morning," Jawaid Afsar, a sales trader at Securequity, said.

"Markets have run up well and a pause for breath is to be expected. All the major benchmarks are looking overbought and any short term correction will be seen as a buying opportunity but the longer-term trend is still to the upside," he said.
 

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