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Europe Markets End Lower


European stock markets ended lower on Tuesday. London's Financial Times-Stock Exchange 100 index eased 6.5 points, or 0.14%, to 4,547.3 as a Bank of England official warns that the rate of Britain's house price inflation is not sustainable. Britain's industrial production rose only 0.1% in January, while the country registered its largest trade deficit on record thanks to drop in exports.

Germany's DAX index lost 58.44 points, or 1.41%, to 4,087.55 as economic adviser Ruerup said there's no need for the European Central Bank to cut rates to bolster the economy. German industrial production fell 0.1%, but that is in line with expectations and might have been weather related.

In Paris, the CAC 40 gave up 44.35 points, or 1.17%, to 3,737.03 amid reports that French public debt rose to a 7-year high in 2003 and that fourth quarter new home sales rose 13%.

In Asia, markets finished mixed overnight. Tokyo's Nikkei 225 index added 29.18 points, or 0.25%, to 11,532.04, with bank stocks contributing the most to the advance.

In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng index lost 176.29 points, or 1.3%, to 13,397.25.

Canada's benchmark S&P/TSX fell 50.90 points, or 0.58%, to 8,750.31.


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