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MX News Update 2024

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European shares pause after recent rally, BoE decision in focus

(Reuters) – European stock prices were muted on Thursday as investors took a breather from recent gains and awaited the Bank of England’s policy decision later in the day, while shares of Spanish bank Sabadell jumped after its hostile takeover bid from competitor BBVA.

The pan-European STOXX 600 was trading 0.1% lower at 0720 GMT, after setting record highs for two consecutive days.

The automotive sector was the hardest hit, with a decline of 1.2%, followed by a decline of 5.5% at Mercedes-Benz.

Spanish bank Sabadell rose 5.5% after rival BBVA presented a 12.23 billion euro takeover offer directly to shareholders, even though the former’s board had already rejected the proposal. BBVA shares fell 5.4%.

The Belgian pharmaceutical company lost 7.8% after its first quarter earnings results.

Italian payments group Nexi rose 6.6% after a bigger-than-expected rise in core profit in the first quarter.

BE Semiconductor Industries climbed 5.1% after announcing it had received an order for 26 hybrid bonding systems.

The BoE is expected to announce its policy decision during the day. The BoE is expected to keep rates stable and is likely to take another step towards a rate cut, but will likely be cautious about signaling an imminent move.

(Reporting by Ankika Biswas in Bengaluru; Editing by Nivedita Bhattacharjee)