European shares drop on global slowdown fears
* German DAX index hits lowest level since January
* Earnings expectations for Europe "too high"
* Ahold results impress, shares rise
* Europe bourses in 2015: link.reuters.com/pap87v
* Asset performance in 2015: link.reuters.com/gap87v
LONDON, Aug 20 (Reuters) - European stock markets extended their losing streak on Thursday, with benchmark indexes in Frankfurt and London hitting seven-month lows as fears of a global economic slowdown took hold.
Minutes from the U.S. Federal Reserve's July meeting dented expectations for a rate hike in mid-September, amid worries over lagging inflation and slowing growth in China that have hit riskier assets around the world.
While there was some good news from Europe's second-quarter earnings season, with shares of Dutch retailer Ahold up 3.5 percent after a solid rise in profits, some traders pointed to lofty valuations relative to history and a darkening outlook for corporate earnings.
"The current earnings expectations for Europe given the global growth outlook are probably too high and it may require additional action from the ECB (European Central Bank)," Deutsche Bank Managing Director Nick Lawson said in a note to clients. Continuación...