The European markets fell for the first time in three days on Thursday after Akzo Nobel and Logitech International reported unexpected quarterly losses and overshadowed the better-than-estimated earnings results from Credit Suisse.
The markets were also negatively impacted by a report showing that existing home sales in the U.S. fell by more than expected in the month of March. The National Association of Realtors in the U.S. said existing home sales fell 3.0% to an annual rate of 4.57 million units in March from a downwardly revised level of 4.71 million in February. Economists had expected existing home sales to fall to a 4.65 million unit rate from the 4.72 million unit rate originally reported for the previous month.
Separately, the U.S. Labor Department said in a report that initial jobless claims rose to 640,000 from the previous week's revised figure of 613,000. Economists had expected jobless claims to rise to 639,000 from the 610,000 originally reported for the previous week.
The FTSEurofirst 300 index of pan-European blue chips closed 0.47% lower at 791.49 points, while the narrower DJ Stoxx 50 index fell 0.67% to 1,934.02 points.
Around Europe, the U.K.'s FTSE 100 index fell 0.315 to 4,018.23, while France's CAC 40 index slipped 0.55% to 3,008.62 and Germany's DAX index dropped 1.22% to 4,538.21.
Akzo Nobel, the world's largest paint maker, slipped 3.2% after the company reported a first quarter loss, compared to analysts' expectations of a profit.
Logitech International, the world's biggest maker of computer mice, dropped 6.5% after the company reported a fourth quarter loss, compared to analysts' expectations of a profit.
ABB, the world's biggest builder of electricity grids, slid 6.7% after the company reported a 16% drop in first quarter orders.
On the other hand, Credit Suisse, Switzerland's second largest bank, climbed 8.8% after the company reported a first quarter profit of 2 billion francs, compared to a loss of 2.15 billion francs in the first quarter of last year.
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