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European stocks held back by inflation worries

European stocks slipped on Thursday after data showing a spike in U.S. inflation encouraged bets on interest rate hikes and offset some optimism around property developer China Evergrande and a slew of corporate earnings.


The pan-European STOXX 600 fell 0.1% as of 0819 GMT after U.S. consumer prices surged at the fastest pace since 1990 that could compel the Federal Reserve into faster policy tightening.


However, China-exposed sectors, including miners as well as construction and materials, gained more than 1% as troubled developer Evergrande averted a destabilising default at the last minute for the third time in the past month.


Swiss chemical company Sika jumped 10.8% after agreeing to buy construction chemicals maker MBCC in a $6 billion deal.


Luxembourg-based ArcelorMittal (NYSE:MT) gained 2.5% after reporting its strongest quarter in more than a decade.


Retail stocks were among the biggest drags, weighed down by British discount retailer B&M, which dropped 4.9% after posting lower first-half core earnings.

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