European stocks opened solid on Tuesday amid fears that major central banks will raise interest rates to counter slow economic growth, offsetting support from defensive health stocks.

The European Stoxx 600 index settled at 459.78 points. The index fell in the previous session due to data indicating weak activity of US companies and prompting investors to take profits after the recovery in stocks last week.

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Statements by Christine Lagarde, President of the European Central Bank, and Joachim Nagel, President of the German Central Bank, on Monday reinforced market expectations that the Federal Reserve (US central bank) will raise interest rates this month, Reuters reported.

The comments came even as US financial markets are betting that the Federal Reserve will suspend a series of rate hikes this month.

Interest rate-sensitive tech stocks fell 0.8%, outpacing industry losses on the day, while health care stocks rose 0.6%.

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