With little incentive to buy, the retreat in Asia carried through into the European session

and is clouding expectations over the U.S. open later. Soaked into the greyish forecast, Britain's FTSE 100 lost 1.7 per cent to 5,242 while Germany's DAX fell 2.8 per cent to 5,852.32. France's CAC-40 was down 2.1 per cent to 3,189. Wall Street was poised for a similarly downbeat session -- Dow futures were down 1.1 per cent at 11,260 while the broader Standard & Poor's 500 futures fell 1.4 per cent 1,173.
 
Red was again the dominant colour on screens today as the potential tax on financial transactions proposed by Germany and France continued to create pressure on the financial sector in London and concerns over a slowdown in global growth hit resources issues as crude and base metals prices weakened. Investors were also wary after disappointing UK retail sales data.
 
Retail stocks were at a down as UK retail sales came in much worse than anticipated, with supermarket operators falling in unison. Tesco tumbled 3.62p at 380.63p, Morrisons fell 1.5p at 289.4p and Sainsbury slipped 1.55p at 302.75p, while Marks & Spencer lost 4.55p at 335.15p. Clothing retailers were hard hit, with luxury brand Burberry falling 53.5p at 1,293.5p and fashion house Next losing 33p at 2,209p. The only gainer on the main index, apart from Resolution, mentioned above, was Primark owner AB Foods, up 8.5p at 1,046.5p, on revamped break-up chatter.
 
Still in Europe, PPR owned the corporate news chapter. The French luxury goods group announced the appointment of Michele Sofisti as CEO of Sowind Group for immediate start in this new position. He will be seconded by Stefano Macaluso, Managing Director for Girard-Perregaux, and Massimo Macaluso, Managing Director for JeanRichard and the Manufacture, who stay in their current position. He will also continue to serve as Chief Executive Officer Gucci Group Watches and Jewellery, and Member of the Board of Directors of Gucci Timepieces Hong Kong, China, Taiwan and Japan.
 
Across the Atlantic, Childrens Place Retail Stores became one stock to closely follow after closed Wednesday's frenetic trading session at $40.59. In the past year, the stock has hit a 52-week low of $36.96 and 52-week high of $57.63. Childrens Place Retail Stores stock has been showing support around $38.35 and resistance in the $43.27 range.
 

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