LONDON (AFP) – Europe’s main stock markets fell on Friday as investors digested easing concerns about an imminent Western strike on Syria, after lawmakers voted against Britain’s involvement.
London’s FTSE 100 dipped 0.59 percent to stand at 6,445.16 points in late morning deals in the British capital.
Frankfurt’s DAX 30 reversed 0.66 percent to 8,140.90 points and the CAC 40 in Paris shed 0.65 percent to 3,960.42. Madrid’s IBEX 35 lost 0.81 percent in value.
In foreign exchange activity, the European single currency firmed to $1.3247 from $1.3241 late on Thursday. The dollar slipped to 98.12 yen from 98.32 yen.
Sterling firmed to 85.51 pence for a euro, but slipped against the dollar to $1.5494.
“Markets do not like wars; the reaction was pretty clear in the past couple of days,” said Gekko Markets trader Anita Paluch.
“Now the strike on Syria is not imminent … there is a little bit of relief.”
U.S. plans to build an international coalition for a “limited” strike on Syria suffered a blow when British lawmakers voted late on Thursday against the use of force in a blow to Prime Minister David Cameron.
The White House signalled however that President Barack Obama would take unilateral action if necessary.
And French President Francois Hollande said a military strike on Syria could come by Wednesday, adding that Britain’s surprise rejection of armed intervention would not affect his government’s stand.
“Markets this morning are met with the news that parliament has defeated two votes on military action in Syria,” added Spreadex trader David White.
“Fear-linked instruments such as gold and dollars have been sold lightly, indicating that participants are taking news flow as it comes.
“If the market is to be believed, the financial implications of this crisis are at least not thought to be more severe than could be reasonably expected.”
The mining and energy sector took a hit, as gold and oil prices shed recent gains.
World oil prices pulled back from recent peaks as fears eased of a military strike against Syria over its alleged use of chemical weapons.