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European Stocks Fall Third Day on Global Growth Concerns

European stocks declined for a third day, after swinging between gains and losses, as investors weighed the potential for interest rates to remain low for longer amid concerns the global economy is slowing down.

Suedzucker AG slumped to its lowest price since December 2008 after saying that third-quarter operating profit will be lower than last year. Solvay SA gained 1.3 percent after confirming its profit-growth target for 2014. Randgold Resources Ltd. rallied as Numis Securities Ltd. and HSBC Holdings Plc recommended buying the company.

The Stoxx Europe 600 Index slipped 0.4 percent to 326.67 at the close of trading, after earlier rallying as much as 1.1 percent and falling as much as 0.6 percent. The measure has lost 2.5 percent this week as the International Monetary Fund cut its forecasts for global growth, and data showed German industrial output contracted the most in more than five years.

“The rally on the back of the Fed minutes was so strong this morning, investors are taking some money off the table,” Eduardo Silva, a broker at X-Trade Brokers DM SA, said by phone from Lisbon. “It was too much of a move and was too quick. The prospect of a later-than-expected rate hike has been digested and priced into the market, and people are getting worried that global economic growth will disappoint.”

Shares erased earlier gains after a report by four economic institutes warned that Germany’s economy is on the edge of recession as exports to China and Russia sag, and Chancellor Angela Merkel’s domestic policies hold back growth.

Data today showed German exports slumped the most since January 2009, while France’s trade deficit widened. U.K. Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne told the BBC that a global economic slowdown would hurt the British economy.