European stocks edged lower Thursday in cautious trade ahead of the latest European Central Bank decision.

Up 32% from its March lows, the Stoxx Europe 600
SXXP,
-0.43%

slipped 0.5%, with the recently rallying Stoxx Europe Total Market Value Index
STVP,
-0.67%

declining by 1%.

Decliners included shopping center real estate groups Hammerson
HMSO,
-9.61%

and Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield
URW,
-0.96%

.

The European Central Bank is expected to expand its €750 billion Pandemic Emergency Purchase Program, by €500 billion, after ECB President Christine Lagarde downgraded the central bank’s eurozone GDP estimate to a drop between 8% and 12% this year.

The German DAX
DAX,
-0.32%

declined 0.6% as Germany adopted a pandemic economic-stimulus package worth €130 billion for 2020 and 2021.

The euro
EURUSD,
-0.26%

and the British pound
GBPUSD,
-0.51%

each edged lower after recent gains.

Futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average
YM00,
-0.26%

fell 74 points.

LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton
MC,
-0.67%

shares were steady after saying “on this occasion” it is not considering buying Tiffany
TIF,
-2.38%

shares “on the market” after a board meeting. Women’s Wear Daily has reported that LVMH’s planned takeover of Tiffany was in jeopardy.

Of stocks on the move, spirits maker Remy Cointreau
RCO,
+6.88%

rallied 6% as the company said it expects a strong second half of the year and presented its longer-term goals that include an operating margin of 33% by 2030. Its fiscal year ending March profit slumped 29% on a 21% operating margin.

Galapagos
GLPG,
+0.75%

rose as Phase 3 studies of drug it’s making with Gilead
GILD,
+1.55%

showed “sustained efficacy and a consistent safety profile” in treating moderately to severely active rheumatoid arthritis.


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