European Stocks Fall on Disappointing Earnings

LONDON (The Deal) -- European stock indices fell, led by  U.K. shares amid disappointing earnings and accelerating price growth.

In London the FTSE 100 was down 0.45% at 6,813.75. U.K. April inflation data showed price growth topped consensus expectations, with the annual rate of inflation accelerating to 1.8%  in April from 1.6% in March, suggesting interest rates may have to rise from their historic low 0.5% sooner than Bank of England Gov. Mark Carney wishes.

In Frankfurt the DAX slipped 0.15% to 9,645.11 and in Paris the CAC 40 fell 0.34% to 4,454.42.

In Zurich, Credit Suisse Group (CS) rose after it pleaded guilty to helping U.S. citizens evade taxes.

In London BP (BP) slipped after  losing an appeal  against claims it  unsuccessfully argued aren't directly related to Gulf of Mexico oil leaks following the explosion of the Deepwater Horizon rig in 2010.

Variety store retailer Marks & Spencer Group lost almost 3% after posting its third year of declining profits. Investors were unmoved by its forecast of improving margins in both food and general merchandise.

Wireless services provider Vodafone (VOD) also declined after  predicting Ebitda in the fiscal year ending March 2015 will fall  to between 11.4 billion pounds and 11.9 billion pounds ($19.2 billion and $20 billion) because of investment and unfavorable foreign exchange movements. Ebitda in the year just ended was  12.8 billion pounds, it announced on Tuesday. Vodafone is investing 19 billion pounds in the two years ending March 2016.

Drugs maker AstraZeneca (AZN) extended Monday's 11% decline after its board made the bold move of rejecting Pfizer's  (PFE) thrice-sweetened 69.4 billion pounds offer.

Schroders became the latest fund manager on Tuesday to criticize AstraZeneca for failing to hold full discussions with the New York bidder, though some investors have voiced support for the British company's board.

Defense equipment supplier Cobham   dged higher after announcing a $1.46 billion deal to buy Plainview, N.Y.-based Aeroflex Holding to add radio frequency technology.

In Tokyo, the Nikkei 225 closed up 0.49% at 14,075.25.  Yahoo Japan surged  almost 12% after scrapping an unpopular ¥324 billion ($3.2 billion) deal to buy wireless services company eAccess from its own 43% shareholder SoftBank.
In Hong the Hang Seng gained 0.57% to 22,834.68. In Bangkok the SET index closed down 1.3% after the Thai army imposed martial law.

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