European shares steady as firmer banks offset weaker auto stocks
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* STOXX 600 steady, still down 8 pct in 2016
* HSBC rises on stock buyback plans
* ING shares jump as Q2 results beat forecasts
* But auto stocks fall as VW shares retreat
By Sudip Kar-Gupta
LONDON, Aug 3 (Reuters) - European stocks were steady on Wednesday as a rebound in the shares of the region's struggling banks, such as HSBC and ING, offset weaker auto stocks.
The pan-European STOXX 600 index, which had fallen in the last two sessions, was up 0.1 percent. The index, which slumped in the immediate aftermath of Britain's vote in June to quit the European Union, is down 8 percent so far in 2016.
"Earnings have not been too bad, but I remain bearish on the markets. A lot of companies in Europe are beating estimates, but if you look at the results, most of the companies are not actually growing their sales or profits," said Terry Torrison, managing director at Monaco-based McLaren Securities. Continuación...