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European Stocks Retreat From Five-year High

European stocks fell from a five-year high on profit taking as investors digested mixed earnings reports and showed little reaction to a short-term solution to the U.S. debt ceiling crisis.

Meanwhile, China's Dagong Global Credit Rating has downgraded its ratings for U.S. local and foreign currency credit from 'A' to 'A-', and maintained a negative outlook, saying the country is still approaching the verge of default crisis, despite an 11th hour deal that ended a 16-day government shutdown.

The Euro Stoxx 50 index of eurozone bluechip stocks is moving down 0.4 percent, while the Stoxx Europe 50 index, which includes some major U.K. companies, is rising 0.1 percent. Around Europe, France's CAC is down 0.3 percent, the German DAX is declining half a percent and the U.K.'s FTSE 100 is edging down 0.1 percent.

The Asian markets ended broadly higher, while trading in the U.S. index futures point to a lower start following the previous session's rally, which took the tech-heavy Nasdaq to a fresh thirteen-year high.

In stock-specific action, Sulzer is tumbling 5.3 percent in Zurich as the Swiss machinery manufacturer announced job cuts after lowering its financial target for the full year. Likewise, Outotec shares are down nearly 14 percent after the Finnish mining equipment supplier lowered its target for full-year sales and profit.

Nestle is climbing over 3 percent. The Swiss food and drink giant said it expects to deliver nearly 5 percent organic growth for the full year, along with a rise in margins and underlying earnings per share in constant currencies amid an improvement in its capital efficiency.

Department stores operator Metro is adding a percent in Frankfurt. The company backed its adjusted EBIT outlook for the short financial year from January through September despite reporting lower sales of 15.5 billion euros in the third quarter.

Carrefour is rising 2.3 percent in Paris after the French retailer reported higher sales for the third quarter, helped by strong performance by its French hypermarkets.

On the economic front, the euro zone's current account surplus increased to EUR 17.4 billion in August from EUR 15.5 billion in July, mainly due to a rise in visible trade surplus, monthly data from the European Central Bank showed. The surplus on trade in goods increased to EUR 14.7 billion from EUR 11.1 billion.

U.K. retail sales increased more than expected in September, data from the Office for National Statistics revealed. Retail sales volume, including automotive fuel, rose 0.6 percent in September from the previous month. This was forecast to grow 0.4 percent. On a yearly basis, growth in retail sales, including fuel, rose 2.2 percent.

by RTT Staff Writer