ECONOMY

European stocks slide as Tsipras says Greek proposals rejected

European stocks declined after Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras said that creditors rejected the Mediterranean nation’s proposals for a debt agreement.

The Stoxx Europe 600 Index fell 0.5 percent to 396.73 at 10:58 a.m. in London. Greece’s ASE Index snapped a four-day winning streak, falling 3.4 percent, for the biggest decline among western-European markets. Portugal’s PSI 20 Index slid 1.7 percent, for the second-worst performance.

Tsipras told his government that creditors haven’t accepted proposals to unlock aid as he prepared to depart for emergency talks in Brussels, according to a government official. With a week to go before Greece’s bailout expires, a solution had looked possible after he signaled he was ready to end a bitter five-month standoff to avoid default.

“The big reason for the rally was the optimism over the Greek deal but a few holes are being poked in it now,” said Jasper Lawler, a market analyst at CMC Markets Plc in London.

European shares capped their biggest four-day rally since January on Tuesday as the region’s leaders agreed that Greece was finally getting serious about a deal.

Among stocks moving on corporate news, Delhaize Group slid 4.4 percent after agreeing to an all-share takeover offer from Royal Ahold NV.

Bouygues SA tumbled 8.3 percent after rejecting billionaire Patrick Drahi’s bid for its telecommunications unit. Drahi’s phone and cable unit Numericable-SFR, which made the offer, slid 9.3 percent. Its holding company, Altice SA, dropped 7.5 percent. Rival Orange SA fell 3.3 percent and Iliad SA lost 6.3 percent.

Elementis Plc plummeted 17 percent after forecasting full- year earnings would be below market estimates.

Julius Baer Group Ltd. rose 4.3 percent after Switzerland’s third-largest wealth manager said it will take a provision of $350 million to settle a U.S. criminal investigation into whether it helped Americans evade taxes.

BG Group Plc pushed energy companies to the best performance of the 19 industry groups on the Stoxx 600. Oil held on to gains after declining US crude stockpiles added to signs a supply glut is easing. [Bloomberg]