30 de octubre de 2015 / 15:57 / en 2 años

European stocks sag but look set for best month in four years

* FTSEurofirst down 0.5 pct, Greek market falls 2 pct

* But FTSEurofirst still up about 8 percent in Oct.

* BBVA and L‘Oreal fall after disappointing figures

* Renault and Airbus rise after solid results

By Sudip Kar-Gupta

LONDON, Oct 30 (Reuters) - European shares were weighed down on Friday by a drop in Greek stocks and in L‘Oreal and BBVA shares, but remained on track for their biggest monthly gain in four years.

The pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 index fell 0.5 percent while the euro zone’s blue-chip Euro STOXX 50 index retreated 0.3 percent.

Athens underperformed with a 2.1 percent drop.

Shares in major Greek banks slumped after banking sources told Reuters that a health check on them by the European Central Bank (ECB) would reveal a total capital shortfall of up to 14 billion euros ($15.5 billion).

Cosmetics group L‘Oreal fell 4.8 percent after its third-quarter figures missed market forecasts, while Spanish bank BBVA declined 4.3 percent after it reported a loss that was worse than feared.

However, carmaker Renault rose 4.8 percent after third-quarter revenue increased 9.4 percent, while planemaker Airbus rose 4.3 percent after it reported better-than-expected results.

In spite of Friday’s decline, the FTSEurofirst remains about 8 percent in October - its best month since October 2011.

Berkeley Futures’ associate director Richard Griffiths was sceptical as to whether or not European stock markets would make much more progress by the end of 2015, pointing to weak economic growth in Europe as a negative factor.

“We’ve had the best month in ages, but I‘m still bearish,” he said.

However, others saw signs that the ECB would provide more monetary stimulus as a reason to keep buying European equities.

“There are a lot of bargains out there and I expect the market to stabilise and gradually improve as we approach the end of the year,” asset manager Symphonia’s head of international equity, Massimo Baggiani, said.

According to data from Thomson Reuters StarMine, 52 percent of companies in the European STOXX 600 index have beaten or met expectations with their results so far this quarter, although earnings have fallen from a year ago. ($1 = 0.9038 euros)

Today’s European research round-up (Additional reporting by Danilo Masoni; Editing by Louise Ireland)

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