May 20, 2020 / 7:22 AM / 17 days ago

European shares inch lower on doubts over COVID-19 vaccine

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May 20 (Reuters) - European shares headed lower on Wednesday after a downbeat session on Wall Street, as doubts over a potential COVID-19 vaccine reignited fears about the slow recovery from a looming global recession.

The pan-European STOXX 600 dropped 0.3% by 0708 GMT in its second day of fall, with banks, telecoms and travel & leisure sector stocks leading the decline.

Wall Street indexes fell more than 1% overnight after a media report questioned the validity of the results of U.S. drugmaker Moderna’s coronavirus vaccine trial that had sent stock markets soaring on Monday.

In a bright spot, shares of British retailer Marks & Spencer jumped 5.2% after saying that it would accelerate its latest turnaround programme as it dealt with the fallout from the coronavirus crisis and reported a 21% fall in annual profit. (Reporting by Sruthi Shankar in Bengaluru; Editing by Rashmi Aich)

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