European shares retreat from multi-year highs, Casino and Pearson dip

jueves 16 de abril de 2015 12:41 GYT

* FTSEurofirst 300 retreats from near 14-year highs

* Casino falls after slower sales growth

* Pearson leads media stocks lower

By Atul Prakash

LONDON, April 16 (Reuters) - European equities retreated from 14-year highs on Thursday, led lower by shares in French retailer Casino, which reported slower sales growth, and Pearson, on a report that one of its educational technology projects was in trouble.

Casino's stock dropped 4.6 percent after Societe Generale and Natixis cut their target prices, and Pearson fell 4 percent on a report the Los Angeles Unified School District was seeking a refund from Apple over a bungled $1.3 billion iPad plan with a curriculum from Pearson.

The pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 index closed 0.9 percent lower at 1,635.76 points after gaining 0.6 percent on Wednesday to reach levels not seen since late 2000.

Germany's DAX, down 1.9 percent, underperformed the wider market, after a recent sharp rally and as the euro gained against the dollar. A stronger local currency is generally seen negative for export-oriented companies.

The DAX index rose 22 percent in the first quarter, against a 15-percent gain for the wider stock market.   Continuación...