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[LONDON] Europe's main stock markets fell at the start of trade on Thursday, with London's benchmark FTSE 100 index down 0.4 per cent to 6,810.08 points.
Frankfurt's DAX 30 also lost 0.4 per cent to 10,576.56 points and the Paris CAC 40 shed 0.5 per cent to 4,414.41 points, compared with Wednesday's close.
Asian energy firms suffered further losses Thursday after another sharp fall in oil prices, while currency traders moved cautiously the day before a key speech by Federal Reserve boss Janet Yellen.
World markets have struggled to gain traction this week with few catalysts to spur business ahead of Ms Yellen's talk at the annual Jackson Hole symposium of global central bankers.
The main focus this week is on what Ms Yellen has to say at Friday's gathering in Wyoming, with traders hoping for some idea about the Fed's thinking on monetary policy and its plans for any possible interest rate hike.