European shares fall on poor company news, Ukraine tensions

jueves 27 de febrero de 2014 12:09 GYT

* FTSEurofirst 300 index falls 0.5 percent

* Volatility Index up 6.6 pct, indicates risk aversion

* Royal Bank of Scotland falls after posting losses

By Atul Prakash

LONDON, Feb 27 (Reuters) - European equities fell further to a one-week low in late trading on Thursday, with downbeat company news combined with political tension in Ukraine prompting investors to trim their positions in riskier assets.

Cyclical shares lost ground, with autos, insurance , telecoms and banks falling 0.2 to 1.1 percent. Royal Bank of Scotland slumped 8 percent after posting a loss, while insurer Allianz fell following difficulties at its Pimco unit.

Weaker companies dragged down the broader FTSEurofirst 300 index, which had rebounded in February to approach its highest level since May 2008. The pan-European index was down 0.5 percent to 1,342.06 points by 1522 GMT after falling as much as 1,334.74, the lowest level in one week.

Investors' risk aversion was highlighted by the Euro STOXX 50 Volatility index, Europe's widely used gauge of investor sentiment, which gained 6.6 percent.

"The markets had gone ahead of themselves and we may see investors taking some risk out of the table. Volatility has also come back to the fore," said Thomas Malloch, investment manager at Redmayne Bentley.   Continuación...