European stocks slip; G20 talks in focus

* FTSEurofirst 300 down 0.4 pct, Euro STOXX 50 down 0.3 pct

* Investors book profits ahead of G20 meeting outcome

* Ericsson surges after posting forecast-beating results

* For up-to-the-minute market news, click on [STXNEWS/EU]

By Blaise Robinson

PARIS, Oct 22 (BestGrowthStock) – European stocks ended slightly
lower on Friday as worries over the outcome of the G20 meeting
prompted investors to book some profits, after key indexes hit
six-month highs in the previous session.

The FTSEurofirst 300 (.FTEU3: ) index of top European shares
closed 0.4 percent lower at 1,089.45 points, but eked out a gain
of 0.4 percent on the week, its third consecutive weekly gain.

The Euro STOXX 50 (.STOXX50E: ), the euro zone’s blue-chip
index, ended 0.3 percent lower at 2,873.74 points.

“Earnings have been pretty good and a lot of stocks rose
this week on the back of this, so people are using the excuse of
currency tensions with the G20 meeting to cash in profits,” said
David Thebault, head of quantitative sales trading at Global
Equities in Paris.

Consumer-related stocks, which surged earlier in the week,
featured among the biggest losers on Friday. LVMH (LVMH.PA: ) lost
0.8 percent and L’Oreal (OREP.PA: ) surrendered 1.9 percent.

On the first day of a two-day meeting meant to smooth the
path for a G20 summit in Seoul on Nov. 11-12, the United States
struggled to win backing for its proposal of setting targets for
external imbalances as a way of pressing surplus countries such
as China to let their exchange rates rise. [ID:nTOE69L00U]

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Pdf on currencies http://r.reuters.com/gez77p

Graphics on currencies, trade and monetary policy:

http://r.reuters.com/deh58p

Interactive G20 graphic: http://link.reuters.com/men39p

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Ericsson (ERICb.ST: ) soared 4.2 percent after the telecom
equipment maker posted higher-than-expected core profit, boosted
by higher margins.

Rival Nokia (NOK1V.HE: ) lost 2.5 percent a day after
forecast-beating results lifted the stock more than 6 percent.

Around Europe, UK’s FTSE 100 index (.FTSE: ) lost 0.3 percent,
Germany’s DAX index (.GDAXI: ) shed 0.1 percent and France’s CAC
40 (.FCHI: ) dropped 0.3 percent.

The three benchmark indexes have climbed around 13 percent
since late August, lifted in part by mounting expectations of
further quantitative easing from the U.S. Federal Reserve, which
have also dragged down the dollar and boosted commodity prices.

“Further quantitative easing has been priced in by the
market so, going into the Fed meeting in early November, the
risk is on the downside if (Ben) Bernanke doesn’t deliver what
he is expected to,” said Dominique Netter, head of strategic
asset allocation at La Compagnie Financiere Edmond de Rothschild
in Paris.

“Stocks will manage to break above their April highs at some
point this year, but I think they won’t rise much higher.”

The recent rally has lifted European stock valuations to
levels not seen in nearly three months. Shares in the
FTSEurofirst 300 trade at an average 13.4 times reported
earnings, a level not seen since early August.

(Reporting by Blaise Robinson; Editing by David Hulmes)

European stocks slip; G20 talks in focus