European stock markets lower after poor growth data

European stock markets fell at the start of trading on Thursday after official data revealed that Germany's economy shrank in the second quarter.

Frankfurt's DAX 30 index slid 0.40 percent to 9,161.81 points, while in Paris the CAC 40 lost 0.43 percent to 4,176.93 points after separate figures showed flat growth for France.

London's benchmark FTSE 100 index slipped 0.13 percent to 6,647.85 ahead of British growth data due on Friday.

The German economy, Europe's biggest, stalled in the second quarter, hit by weak exports and falling investment, casting a cloud over recovery in the crisis-battered eurozone region.

Germany's gross domestic product shrank by 0.2 percent in the period from April to June, following growth of 0.7 percent in the preceding three months.