12:15 PM EDT, 09/22/2023 (MT Newswires) -- The European stock markets closed mostly lower in Friday trading as the Stoxx Europe 600 fell 0.29%, the Swiss Market Index was down 0.63%, France's CAC lost 0.4 %, the FTSE in London was up 0.07%, and Germany's DAX closed 0.09% lower.
The seasonally adjusted HCOB Flash Eurozone Composite PMI Output Index rose to 47.1 in September, from 46.7 in August, but still indicated a continued decline in business activity with output falling for the fourth straight month. Germany and France were the main drivers of the overall downturn in activity, while the rest of the eurozone's business activity was mainly stable in September.
In the UK, retail sales volumes rose an estimated 0.4% in August after a 1.1% drop in July, according to the Office for National Statistics. Over the three months to August, sales volumes increased 0.3% compared with the previous three months.
According to the S&P Global/CIPS Flash UK PMI Composite Output Index, September data indicated a decline in UK private sector output for the second straight month as the rate of decline accelerated to its fastest since January 2021.
In Germany, residential real estate prices fell by an average 9.9% in Q2 from a year earlier, according to the Federal Statistical Office, marking the sharpest decline since the time series began in 2000.
In Italy, 2022 GDP at current prices grew 6.8% compared with the previous year, according to the Italian National Institute of Statistics.
In corporate news, Intel (INTC) has been fined 376.4 million euros ($400.9 million) by the European Commission for anticompetitive practices in the computer chip market, the EU regulator said Friday.
Microsoft's (MSFT) $69 billion acquisition of Activision Blizzard (ATVI) moved a step closer to being approved after the UK's Competition and Markets Authority said Friday that Activision's sale of cloud gaming rights to Ubisoft "substantially addresses previous concerns."
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