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CAC 40 Slides Despite Upbeat Earnings

French stocks fell on Thursday as investors exercised some caution after sharp gains in the previous session and ahead of the Bank of England's monetary policy decision, due later in the day.

The euro hovered near a two-week low versus the dollar, helping limit overall losses to some extent.

The benchmark CAC 40 was down 19 points or 0.36 percent at 5,236 in opening deals after rallying 1.8 percent in the previous session.

Airbus dropped 1.2 percent, a day after the European planemaker warned of another "material" charge to earnings on the A400M military transport plane.

Vinci fell 1.8 percent despite the concessions and construction company posting higher full-year 2017 net income and predicting a further rise in profits and revenue this year.

Societe Generale shares jumped 4 percent. The bank delivered a surprise profit in the fourth quarter, beating expectations for a loss affected by several exceptional items.

Rival BNP Paribas rose over 1 percent after it agreed to buy the Italian Banco BPM's custodian banking activities.

Drinks company Pernod Ricard rallied 2.3 percent as it reported a 25 percent increase in its profit for the first half of 2018, reflecting a reduction in financial expenses and positive non-recurring items.

Oil & gas company Total SA rose about 2 percent after its fourth-quarter net profit soared 86 percent from last year on the back of higher oil prices.

Publicis Groupe shares advanced more than 4 percent after the advertising group delivered fourth-quarter and full-year revenues in line with estimates.

On the economic front, France's economy is set to grow at a slightly slower pace in the first quarter of 2018, a survey from Bank of France showed.

GDP is expected to climb 0.4 percent in the first quarter, slower than the 0.6 percent increase seen in the fourth quarter of 2017.

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