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* STOXX 600 down 0.4 pct
* Mediclinic jumps 20 pct on regulatory reprieve
* Legal & General hit by underperform rating
* Financials weigh after Deutsche results disappoint
By Helen Reid
LONDON, April 27 (Reuters) - European shares retreated from 20-month highs on Thursday with financials and commodity-related stocks the main drag on the benchmark index.
The pan-European STOXX 600 index was down 0.4 percent in early trading, after having hit a fresh 20-month high in the previous session. France’s CAC 40 also fell 0.5 percent, just off Wednesday’s nine-year high.
First-quarter earnings for STOXX 600 companies are expected to rise 5.5 percent this reporting season, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S data. Revenues are expected to increase 5.7 percent.
Of the 20 percent of companies having reported so far, 70 percent had beaten estimates while 19 percent had missed, Thomson Reuters data showed.
Deutsche Bank shares fell 3.5 percent even though first-quarter net profit more than doubled following a rebound in bond trading.
Analysts said the bank’s revenues, which were down 9 percent for the quarter, had disappointed.
“We are positive on costs and capital but the key uncertainty remains revenues. Today’s results confirm this view we think,” said UBS analysts.
Shares of Deutsche Bank have nearly doubled from their Sept 2016 lows.
A 4.7 percent drop in Banco Popular shares added to underperformance in European banks, down 0.3 percent.
However, results from Lloyds boosted the British bank up 3.8 percent after its first-quarter profit bucked expectations of a post-Brexit dip.
Insurers were also among the worst-performing sectors, weighed by Legal & General shares which fell 5 percent after Credit Suisse gave the insurer an underperform rating, and Munich Re going ex-dividend.
First-quarter earnings hit by weak margins in its renewable and retail business dampened appetite for shares in Finnish energy company Neste which fell 6 percent, dragging on the broader European energy index.
Shares in aeronuatical company Zodiac Aerospace hit a year-to-date low, down 4.4 percent after a French media report which raised doubts on a planned takeover by Safran .
Among risers, Mediclinic shares jumped up to 12 percent after the Abu Dhabi government canceled a requirement for citizens to make a 20 percent co-payment for treatment at private facilities, in a boon to private healthcare providers.
Elsewhere, upbeat results from the likes of SKF, Nokia and Subsea 7 were cheered as more investors piled into the European economic recovery story.
Subsea 7 shares jumped 8.5 percent after the oil services company raised its forecast for 2017 margins.
Nokia jumped 6.4 percent to a 20-month high after the telecom networks equipment maker reported a slowing rate of sales decline, saying the global networks market was recovering.
Swedish industrials company SKF hit its highest level in nearly two years, up 4.2 percent after it posted better-than-expected results and a strong guidance for the second quarter.