European Closing Brief: Europe Sells Off; Drugmakers Weigh Down FTSE - TheStreet

Today's big U.S. drug merger spurred competitive concerns in the U.K., sending pharma shares sharply lower amid a general European selloff.

As traders reacted to

Pfizer's

(PFE) - Get Report

announced

acquisition of

Warner-Lambert

(WLA)

, big drugmakers such as

Glaxo Wellcome

(GLX)

and

AstraZeneca

(AZN) - Get Report

tumbled in London trading. That helped knock the

FTSE 100

down 66.4, or 1.1%, to 6118.6.

Germany's

Xetra Dax

was even worse off, dropping 148.29, or 2%, to 7296.32 as

Mannesmann

(MNNSY)

dropped 5.75 euros, or 1.8%, to 315.75 on Frankfurt's biggest volume of the day.

Deutsche Telekom

(DT) - Get Report

got slammed 4.6%, and only

Siemens

(SMAWY)

was on the plus side among Frankfurt's 10 most-active stocks.

Adidas-Salomon

(ADDDY)

was a standout on the plus side, surging 5.30, or 9.4%, to 62.00 on strong 1999 earnings.

France's

CAC 40

lost 72.14, or 1.2%, to 6203.58, after trading as high as 6336.68 intraday. Some leading telecom shares gave back much of their recent run-up, with

France Telecom

(FTE)

slumping 9.90, or 6.1%, to 152.10 and

Equant

(ENT) - Get Report

off 2.40, or 1.9%, to 125.50.

Alcatel

(ALA)

countered the trend, however, with a rise of 9, or 3.5%, to 267.50.