* STOXX 600 flat
* Ericcson slumps after profit warning, Nokia also falls
* Airline stocks, PageGroup gain
(Adds detail and quotes, updates prices)
By Kit Rees
LONDON, Oct 12 European stock markets were
steady on Wednesday, although Sweden's Ericsson led
the region's technology stocks down to a one month-low after
issuing a profit warning.
The STOXX 600 index struggled to find direction and
traded flat in percentage terms by 0848 GMT, having fallen in
the previous session.
Germany's DAX also fell 0.2 pct, while Britain's
blue-chip FTSE 100 index dropped 0.5 percent. The UK's
FTSE 250 mid-cap index was down 0.4 percent.
Telecoms equipment maker Ericsson dropped more than 16
percent to its lowest point since 2008 after warning that its
third-quarter profit would be "significantly lower" than
expected after a downturn in its mobile broadband business had
The world's biggest maker of mobile network equipment
reported a 94 percent plunge in quarterly operating profit and
tumbling sales at its core networks division.
"They're near the bottom of the pile in terms of mobile now,
in the age of Apple and Samsung, Ericsson don't really have a
look-in," Jonathan Roy, advisory investment manager at Charles
Hanover Investments, said.
"They haven't really come up with any new or exciting
products, so I wouldn't be surprised to see them go further
Peer Nokia also dropped, down 4.6 percent, set
for its biggest daily loss since June 27.
Among the top risers, however, Deutsche Lufthansa
gained 3.1 percent after an upgrade from Kepler Cheuvreux, while
budget airline easyJet also rose after a bond issue.
UK staffing firm PageGroup extended its gains from
the previous session, up 5.2 percent following a spate of target
price upgrades. The company reported a set of better than
expected results in the previous session.
"Trading in the third quarter was better than expected as
demand in the UK held up better than feared," analysts at
Barclays said, adding that they expected a more gradual decline
in demand over 2017 and 2018.
(Reporting by Kit Rees; Editing by Sudip Kar-Gupta and Raissa