By  on July 18, 2014

LONDON — European stock markets made tepid gains or edged down in mid-morning trading on Friday, impacted by the plane crash in Ukraine on Thursday, and fears that tensions between Russia, Ukraine and the West could escalate as a result.

The FTSE MIB in Milan and the CAC 40 in Paris made marginal gains, with the Italian market climbing 0.2 percent to 20,638.62, and the French one 0.1 percent to 4,319.20.

The DAX in Frankfurt fell 0.4 percent to 9,714.50, while the FTSE 100 in London dipped 0.3 percent to 6,717.52.

The euro traded at $1.35 against the dollar, while the pound fetched $1.71, and the Swiss franc equaled $1.11 at 10:15 a.m. CET.

Retail and luxury stocks were mostly down, with a few exceptions. Mulberry Group advanced 6.3 percent to 7.75 pounds; Salvatore Ferragamo, 2.2 percent to 21.33 euros;, 2.4 percent to 1.29 pounds, and Brunello Cucinelli, 4.4 percent to 17.53 euros.

Among the stocks that lost the most ground were Italia Independent Group, 2.5 percent to 33.11 euros; LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton, 1.5 percent to 136.45 euros; and Hermès, 1.9 percent to 262.75 euros. The latter company, in reporting a 5.8 sales gain in the second quarter, wraned that first-half operating margin would be down slightly due to currency hits.

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