European shares inch lower as banks fall, energy boost fades

LONDON: European shares slipped on Monday as an early boost from energy shares faded, and banks fell, led lower by Spain's Banco Popular on concerns that it could be wound down.
The pan-European 600 index was down 0.15 percent by 0958 GMT (5:58 a.m. ET), with activity reduced by a public holiday in the region, while Britain's FTSE which hit a fresh record high on Friday, was also down, by 0.3 percent.
An Islamist attack in London days before a national election on Thursday had no major impact on broader equity markets, while geopolitical tensions in the Middle East lifted energy stocks in early deals.
Crude oil prices rose 1 percent before paring gains after top exporter Saudi Arabia and other Arab states cut ties with Qatar, accusing it of supporting terrorism.
"The move is unlikely to have a material impact on the physical market but the prospect that rising tensions could result in disruptions ... makes the immediate price response a reasonable one," Exane said in a note to clients.