European stocks drop amid trade and Fed concerns – CNBC

Looking across the European benchmark, Sodexo was among the top performers, up by 2 percent. The French hospitality company reported its first quarter sales figures and said that the “yellow vests” protests had impacted tourism in December. The company was forced to close its river cruising businesses and the restaurant at the Eiffel Tour during some of the demonstrations last month.

Tesco also rose 1.7 percent after updating the markets on its Christmas performance. The grocery retailer said Thursday that it had outperformed its competitors with a 2.2 percent increase in Christmas sales. On the other hand, Debenhams announced that it is in talks with lenders to receive fresh capital.

Osram fell to the bottom of the index, down by 6 percent. The lighting company said that there had been lower demand by auto firms.

Also in the corporate world, four former top executives of Danske Bank were sued on Wednesday by a U.S. shareholder, who accused the bank of defrauding investors, Reuters reported.

In Europe, investors keep monitoring the Brexit process ahead of next week’s critical vote. The U.K. Parliament agreed Wednesday that the government must come up with a plan-B within three days if the ‘Withdrawal Agreement’ is not approved on Tuesday.

In terms of data, the European Central Bank will be releasing its latest meeting accounts at 12.30 p.m. GMT.

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