UK stocks : FTSEurofirst 300 down 1.5 pct
Jonathan Stubbs, European equity strategist at Citi, said that over the next two years, he would expect the first proper bull market in equities since the mid to late 1990s.
"To get a proper bull market in equities you need to see... growth coming through, you need a re-rating and you need inflows. As we look out to the next one to two years we think all of those ingredients will be in place," he said.
BANKS, AUTOS DENTED
Commerzbank was second-biggest faller on the FTSEurofirst 300 index, down 5.9 percent in brisk trade, after it posted a larger than expected quarterly loss.
Trading volume in Commerzbank stood at more than twice its 90-day daily average.
"We're well overdue a bit of a sell-off... you've also got some very disappointing results from Commerzbank this morning which have basically fed into the banking sector," Michael Hewson, senior markets analyst at CMC Markets, said.
European auto stocks also came under pressure, off 3.2 percent after gains left investors such as Citi and HSBC sifting through the sector for companies that still offer some value.
The auto sector was the best performer in Europe in 2012, surging 38 percent, and since September it has rallied around 20 percent, despite continued earnings per share downgrades.
Over the last six months I/B/E/S 12-month forward earnings per share forecasts have been downgraded by 12 percent as European car market fundamentals have deteriorated further.
HSBC said French car makers face major challenges and downgraded Renault to "neutral" from "overweight" after a strong share
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