European shares fell on Tuesday as a drop in auto stocks after Germany’s Schaeffler cut its profit outlook and disappointment over a failed buyout of Stada offset gains among basic resources firms and Spain’s Bankia. The pan-European STOXX 600 index was down 0.8 percent, as were blue chips, while Germany’s DAX was 0.8 percent weaker. Autos were the biggest pain point in Europe, falling 1.7 percent after German auto parts supplier Schaeffler slashed its profit guidance on growing price pressures and high costs.
Schaeffler’s shares tumbled nearly 12 percent, while shares in peer Continental dropped 3.4 percent. “Schaeffler flagging increased pricing pressure will almost definitely raise concerns across the supplier space,” analysts at Jefferies said. “Schaeffler’s profit warning will reignite the debate on the resilience on supplier margins and organic growth (post pricing) as we approach the ‘peak’ of the cycle,” Jefferies analysts added.
German drugmaker Stada was another notable faller, dropping 5 percent after private equity groups Bain Capital and Cinven failed to win the required shareholder acceptances to take over the firm. Stada’s shares have rallied nearly 26 percent this year, boosted by buyout talks.
Spanish banks were a bright spot as investors cheered Bankia’s move to buy smaller peer BMN in a deal worth around $924 million, a further step in cleaning up Spain’s beleaguered banking sector.
Bankia’s shares rose more than 3 percent. They helped support Europe’s banking index which was flat after gains on Monday sparked by a taxpayer-funded rescue of two struggling Italian regional banks, which prompted a rally in Italian banking stocks.
“Spain is still seen as the weak one in Europe, so if this takes it a step away from further weakness then that’s certainly a positive,” Mike van Dulken, head of research at Accendo Markets, said. “It’s probably a positive in the sense that it’s consolidation, cleaning it up, simplifying it, but it relies on how futures moves are made.”
Gains among mining firms Anglo American, ArcelorMittal and Rio Tinto helped prop up the basic resources sector, which gained 1.1 percent, the only sector to make any headway. Britain’s commodities-heavy FTSE 100 index was down 0.4 percent.