CORRECTED – European shares slip as banks fall; SKF rises

(Corrects to clarify the index up 71 pct since March 2009)

LONDON, April 16 (BestGrowthStock) – European shares slipped on
Friday from near 19-month highs as investors awaited results
from Bank of America (BAC.N: ) and General Electric (GE.N: ), with
banks the major fallers.

SKF (SKFb.ST: ), however, surged 7.4 percent after the world’s
biggest bearing maker reported better-than-expected
first-quarter results.

By 0712 GMT, the pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 (.FTEU3: )
index of top shares was down 0.4 percent at 1,108.05 points. The
index has risen 71 percent since early March 2009 and is on
track to post its seventh straight week of gains.

Banking stocks retreated from two consecutive days of gains.
HSBC (HSBA.L: ), Banco Santander (SAN.MC: ), BNP Paribas (BNPP.PA: )
and Deutsche Bank (DBKGn.DE: ) fell 0.7 to 1.5 percent.

“The market has had a strong run and is running out of steam
and Google’s (GOOG.O: ) earnings disappointed after the market’s
close,” said Bernard McAlinden, investment strategist at NCB
Stockbrokers.

“Today is bellwether General Electric’s results. Investors
will be looking for earnings that meet or exceed expectations
and looking to see if topline growth is there.”

Commodity stocks slipped as crude (CLc1: ) and metal prices
fell on a stronger dollar. Energy stocks BP (BP.L: ), BG Group
(BG.L: ), Royal Dutch Shell (RDSa.L: ) and Total (TOTF.PA: ) lost 0.3
to 0.6 percent.

Stock Market Analysis

(Reporting by Joanne Frearson)

CORRECTED – European shares slip as banks fall; SKF rises