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European shares slip after vaccine-driven rally

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Nov 17 (Reuters) - European stocks eased from eight-month highs on Tuesday as tighter coronavirus restrictions across the continent halted a market rally that was powered by encouraging COVID-19 vaccine updates.

The pan-European STOXX 600 index slipped 0.1% by 0808 GMT. It closed at it highest level since Feb. 27 on Monday after positive data from drugmaker Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine.

Near-term economic outlook remains hazy, with Sweden moving to restrict the size of public gatherings as COVID-19 cases spike and a British medical adviser suggesting strengthening the three-tier system of restrictions when the full lockdown in England ends.

European banks retreated after a more than 3% surge. BBVA fell 3.4% after it and smaller rival Sabadell said they were in talks to create Spain’s second-biggest domestic lender by assets.

Oil and gas and travel stocks also slipped. (Reporting by Sruthi Shankar in Bengaluru; Editing by Anil D’Silva)

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