European stocks start lower as Italy vote looms

On Thursday, European stocks started lower, notwithstanding a soar in crude prices as political uncertainty in Italy kept weighing on market sentiment.

During European morning trade, the EURO STOXX 50 lost 0.19%, French CAC 40 descended 0.06%, while German DAX 30 sank 0.23%.

Energy stocks traded mostly higher, as crude prices leapt after on Wednesday, OPEC members agreed to reduce output by 1.2 million barrels per day.

Financial markets were still jittery because Italian citizens are about to vote on December 4 in a referendum on whether to change their national constitution, which should assist Prime Minister Matteo Renzi in implementing badly required economic reforms.

French oil and gas major Total SA rallied 0.51%, Italian ENI ascended 2.28%, while Norwegian rival Statoil tacked on 1.50%.

In London, FTSE 100 lost 0.03%, pressured by Unilever, whose stocks dipped 2.57% after Amnesty Internation slammed the company, along with Nestle and Colgate, for palm oil supply chain abuses.

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