European Stocks Decline as Commodity, Leisure Companies Retreat

  • Dollar gains after Fed's Williams talks up rate rise chances
  • Wincor Nixdorf advances on Diebold takeover agreement

Concerns over the strength of the global economy took over once again, dragging European stocks down from a three-month high.

The Stoxx Europe 600 Index dropped 0.4 percent at the close of trading in London, paring losses of as much as 0.9 percent. Miners fell with metals as the prospect of a U.S. rate increase sent the dollar higher.

“A strong dollar is a burden for the price development of commodities,” said Christian Stocker, a strategist at UniCredit Bank AG in Munich. “Materials or oil and gas are suffering from the weak environment of commodities.”

The dollar advanced after John Williams, president of the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, said over the weekend that there was a “strong case” for a rate hike at the Fed’s last meeting of 2015.

Greece’s ASE Index slid for a third day, with National Bank of Greece SA, Piraeus Bank SA and Eurobank Ergasias SA extending record lows as they seek to cover capital shortfalls.

The Stoxx 600 capped a three-month high last week, after Fed minutes indicated the U.S. economy can withstand higher borrowing costs, and officials stressed increases will be gradual. Optimism for more stimulus from the European Central Bank also helped equities take their rebound since a September low to 13 percent through Friday after President Mario Draghi reiterated that policy makers will do what’s necessary to raise inflation.

Playtech Plc slid 9 percent after calling off an acquisition, dragging travel-and-leisure companies down. Total SA weighed heaviest on an energy gauge, which resumed declines after a brief rise spurred by a report that Saudi Arabia is willing to cooperate with OPEC and non-OPEC members to steady the oil market.

Among other stocks moving on corporate news, Credit Suisse Group AG fell 2.9 percent after completing a capital increase through the sale of 58 million new shares. RWE AG slid 5 percent after the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung cited the utility’s chief executive officer as saying that uncertainty over Germany’s energy policy is making it difficult to secure financing to expand its business.

Wincor Nixdorf AG rose 6.1 percent to its highest price since May 2014 after Diebold Inc. agreed to buy its German rival to create the biggest maker of cash machines and security systems. 

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