August 12, 2015 / 11:19 AM / 2 years ago

European stocks fall after China pushes yuan lower again

* FTSEurofirst, Euro STOXX 50 down about 2 percent

* Carmakers, luxury goods stocks underperform again

* Henkel shares sink 7 pct on results, China exposure

* Goldman Sachs downgrade hits Delta Lloyd shares

* Europe bourses in 2015: (Adds euro zone data, Henkel)

By Sudip Kar-Gupta

LONDON, Aug 12 (Reuters) - European shares extended the week’s sell-off on Wednesday after China allowed the yuan to weaken further, hitting export-focused stocks for a second straight day.

China is the second-biggest buyer of EU goods after the United States and its surprise devaluation this week has heaped market pressure on European makers of cars, luxury goods and consumer products.

The pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 index was down 1.8 percent at 1046 GMT, while the euro zone’s blue-chip Euro STOXX 50 index was down 2 percent.

German automakers Daimler and BMW were down 2 to 3 percent, while luxury-goods group LVMH was down 2.8 percent.

“We stay underweight German autos, luxury and capital goods with high China exposure,” Credit Suisse strategist Andrew Garthwaite said in a note to clients.

Data also showed industrial output in the 19-member euro zone fell by more than expected in June, as activity in the currency bloc’s main economies of Germany, France and Italy fell markedly.

The yuan hit a four-year low on Wednesday.

The People’s Bank of China move has sparked fears of a global currency war and accusations that Beijing was giving an unfair advantage to its struggling exporters.

“We had a decent run-up but this is all unwinding pretty quickly. A competitive devaluation of currencies is never good,” Mirabaud Securities European equity sales executive, Rupert Baker, said.

“I’d be avoiding areas such as carmakers and luxury goods companies,” he said.

Shares of consumer-goods company Henkel sank more than 7 percent after it saw a slowdown in organic revenue growth at its adhesives business. The company said it remained optimistic for its business in China.

Consumer goods group Unilever also lost ground after being downgraded by Goldman Sachs, while Dutch insurer Delta Lloyd fell sharply for the second day in a row.

Delta Lloyd’s shares plunged 20 percent on Tuesday on concerns about its financial capital position, and the stock lost another 10 percent on Wednesday after the Goldman Sachs downgrade.

The FTSEurofirst and Euro STOXX 50 indexes remain up about 12 percent since the start of 2015, partly due to economic stimulus measures from the European Central Bank.

However, Deutsche Bank strategists warned of volatile times ahead.

“Our rates strategists think that the China devaluation is a recipe for higher volatility across all asset classes,” they wrote in a note.

Asset performance in 2015:

Today’s European research round-up (Editing by Robin Pomeroy)

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