* Global mood sours ahead of Fed minutes
* John Laing jumps on KKR's plans to takeover
* Miners, tech firms among top decliners
May 19 (Reuters) - European stocks posted their worst daily
fall in one week on Wednesday, tracking weakness on Wall Street,
as investors grew wary of rising inflationary pressures
increasing the odds of an early tightening of monetary policy.
The pan-European STOXX 600 index fell 1.5%, but was
trading less than 2% below its all-time high. Miners, travel and
technology stocks were the top decliners.
A jump in regulated electricity and gas bills and clothing
and footwear prices saw British consumer price inflation more
than double in April, data showed on Wednesday.
Central bank policymakers expect the surge to be temporary,
but investors are worried that the price rises may last for a
prolonged period, pushing central banks to counter it with
"The worries that you see around inflation and long-bond
yields starting to tick up, particularly in the U.S., are
concerns on a global equity level and they will impact Europe,"
said Aaron Barnfather, European equities portfolio manager at
Lazard Asset Management.
"But Europe has lot less risks because we haven't performed
as well, and from the quantitative easing point of view, the ECB
has been clear that they will continue for some period of time."
European Central Bank chief Christine Lagarde said on
Tuesday it was "essential that monetary and fiscal support are
not withdrawn too soon."
Investors will be watching for more clues on inflation when
the U.S. Federal Reserve releases its minutes from the latest
policy meeting later on Wednesday.
Meanwhile, bitcoin and ether tumbled to 3-1/2-month lows
following China's move a day ago to ban financial and payment
institutions from providing cryptocurrency services.
"The collapse across the entire realm of cryptocurrencies
has many fearful of the economic implications of such capital
destruction," said Joshua Mahony, senior market analyst at IG.
A volatility gauge of European equities rose to its
highest in almost a week.
Chip stocks came under pressure, with ASM International
, ASML and Infineon Technologies
each down more than 2% on concerns about a global semiconductor
A report by the German Economic Institute showed bottlenecks
in the supply of raw materials could cost Germany a rapid
recovery from the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic,
with two-thirds of the sectors reporting supply constraints.
European banks posted the smallest declines, helped
by rising euro zone government bond yields.
British infrastructure investor John Laing Group
surged 11.2% after U.S. private equity firm KKR agreed
to buy the company in a deal valued at about 2 billion pounds
(Reporting by Sruthi Shankar and Shreyashi Sanyal in Bengaluru;
Editing by Arun Koyyur and Jonathan Oatis)