Around the World's Markets: Paris

THE CAC 40 closed down 0.42 per cent at 4,152, after earlier falling as low as 4,093. France Telecom weighed on the blue chip index, falling sharply after announcing flat profits for 1998, despite predictions that deregularisation across Europe's telecom markets would boost profits this year.

LVMH rose 4.85 per cent after the luxury brands group said with its 1998 results that the worst of the Asian crisis was behind it, while Renault climbed 1.9 per cent as worries over its planned tie-up with Nissan receded.