Nov.13 - Vodafone wrote down the value of its business in Spain and Italy by 5.9 billion pounds ($9.4 billion) on Tuesday as recession-hit Europeans cut back on calls. Sonia Legg reports
£5.9bln pounds is today's daily digit - Vodafone's surprise writedown on the value of its business in Spain and Italy. The British mobile operator says cash-strapped Europeans are cutting back on calls. It's the latest company to fall victim to reduced demand in recession-hit euro zone countries. Last week French bank Credit Agricole took a 2 billion euro writedown on the sale of its Greek business. Vodafone is in a better position than many of its rivals thanks to its strength in the US and emerging markets. But it has lowered its full year outlook and investors were disappointed when its dividend payments were smaller than expected. Vodafone shares fell almost 4 percent in early trade - the biggest fall on the UK's FTSE 100.