Oil-price slide hits European energy shares

martes 30 de diciembre de 2014 08:56 GYT

* FTSEurofirst 300 down 0.5 pct

* Oil & gas stocks down 1.9 pct as Brent hits new low

* Next up 3.2 pct as Christmas sales trigger guidance hike (Updates)

By Francesco Canepa and Lionel Laurent

LONDON, Dec 30 (Reuters) - European shares fell on Tuesday, the last full trading day of the year, led lower by energy companies as Brent oil fell to a 5-1/2-year low on persistent concerns about a global supply glut.

The STOXX Europe 600 oil & gas index was down 1.9 percent at 1219 GMT, taking its loss for the year to 15 percent. The price of Brent oil is down by about half since June due to a big oversupply and tepid demand, hitting energy companies hard.

Explorers Seadrill and Tullow Oil were down around 3 percent. The UK FTSE 100 index fell 0.9 percent, underperforming its European peers, with London-listed energy majors BP and Shell down some 2 percent.

UK retailer Next bucked the trend, rising 3.2 percent after it lifted its full-year profit guidance on the back of a 2.9 percent rise in sales in the run up to Christmas.

Trading activity was broadly subdued, with uncertainty in Greece also weighing on markets ahead of a January election that the leftist anti-bailout Syriza party is tipped to win after years of recession.   Continuación...