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FTSE blog: European markets fall sharply

European stocks fell sharply in morning trades on Wednesday ahead of the European Union Summit and more concerns that Greece could leave the euro.

At 14.33, the FTSE 100 was down 1.7 per cent to stand at 5310.31. The German Dax and the French Cac 40 were also down 1.4 and 1.8 per cent respectively.

An an interview with the Dow Jones on Tuesday Greek Prime Minister Lucas Papademos said that the country is making contingency plans for an exit from the euro, and warned of the high costs associated with that.

Asian shares also fell overnight with the Nikkei 225 in Japan down 2 per cent and the Hong Kong Hang Seng down 1.3 per cent.

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