August 6, 2018 / 7:40 AM / 3 months ago

Sharp stock falls mar European trading as HSBC and Banco BPM disappoint

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LONDON, Aug 6 (Reuters) - European shares floundered on Monday in cautious trading as Europe's biggest bank HSBC disappointed investors, while doubts over a planned $87 billion tie-up with Praxair sank shares in German industrial gases group Linde.

Falls in HSBC HSBA.L> and Banco BPM after results dragged the banking sector down, while chemicals and industrials shares also weighed on the pan-European STOXX 600, down 0.1 percent by 0730 GMT.

HSBC shares fell 1.1 percent after it reported disappointing earnings due to rising expenses from investments in a new growth strategy and a $765 million provision against sale of U.S. mortgage securities. Banco BPM <shares fell 7.6 percent after the Italian lender said earnings missed forecasts due to higher than expected loan loss provisions.

M&A disappointments hit some shares hard.

Linde sank 9.6 percent to a 3 1/2 month low after it said regulators may ask it and its U.S. rival Praxair to sell more assets in order to get antitrust approval for their merger.

The heavyweight stock dragged Germany's DAX down to underperform peers, declining 0.2 percent. Linde also pulled the chemicals sector index down 0.9 percent.

British serviced offices group IWG also suffered from M&A pain, sinking 20.8 percent to the bottom of the STOXX 600 after the firm ended takeover talks with private equity firms Terra Firms, TDR and Starwood. (Reporting by Helen Reid; editing by Danilo Masoni)

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