* Athens’ ATG market touches 3-year lows
* SAP falls as Oracle forecasts disappointing profits
* Bilfinger shares plunge after profit warning
* Airbus touches 3-month lows
* Europe bourses in 2015: link.reuters.com/pap87v
* Asset performance in 2015: link.reuters.com/gap87v
By Sudip Kar-Gupta
LONDON, June 18 (Reuters) - European shares fell on Thursday, with the Athens bourse touching three-year lows as the prospects of Greece reaching a quick deal with its international creditors faded.
Athens’ benchmark ATG equity index fell 2.7 percent as the likelihood of a breakthrough on Greece at Thursday’s gathering of European finance ministers looked increasingly remote.
Greece must find a way out of the impasse by the end of June, when it faces a 1.6 billion euro ($1.8 billion) repayment due to the International Monetary Fund, potentially leaving it bankrupt and on the verge of exiting the euro zone.
The pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 index was down 0.7 percent, while Germany’s DAX and France’s CAC also retreated 0.6-0.7 percent.
While the Greek market is down nearly 20 percent since the start of 2015, the FTSEurofirst remains up by around 10 percent, partly due to economic stimulus measures from the European Central Bank (ECB).
Mike Reuter, a trader at Tradition, said that while the Greek worries were causing some investors to trim back European equity holdings in the short-term, the longer-term outlook looked more stable given the backdrop of the ECB’s support.
“People are starting to get worried and there is a bit of taking risk off. But there is still support for the market for the next four to five weeks,” he said.
German software maker SAP was one of the biggest drags on the FTSEurofirst, as SAP fell 1.7 percent after rival Oracle forecast quarterly profit below analysts’ estimates.
German engineering services company Bilfinger also slumped 16 percent after a new profit warning, while Airbus touched three-month lows on expectations of fewer orders this year and a rebound in the euro currency.
However, mining stocks outperformed. The sector was boosted by firmer copper prices, which advanced partly due to a retreat in the U.S. dollar on currency markets after investors pushed back expectations of a U.S. rate hike to December from an earlier September target.
A weaker U.S. dollar is often good for miners as it makes metals more affordable for buyers holding currencies other than the dollar, but it can impact European exporters such as Airbus by pushing up the euro on markets.
Today’s European research round-up (Additional reporting by Francesco Canepa; Editing by Mark Heinrich)