Most of the European shares kicked off the morning trade in the red territory on Wednesday, tracking losses in Asia and the U.S. amid lingering concerns about a possibly near exit of the Federal Reserve`s bond-purchasing program. Today’s PMI feed from the euro area didn`t help the sentiment as well.
As of 03:49 EST, Europe`s key benchmark the Stoxx 600 plunged 0.34 percent to 298.57 , and the blue-cup Stoxx 50 fell 0.39 percent to 2,722.14 .
Equities remained under pressure today and especially from Asia after early data showed weaker-than-expected economic growth in Australia in the first three months of the year. The GDP data weighed on Asia`s stock markets and prompted investors to dump the banking stocks.
Moving to Europe, a mixed message was sent by Markit Economics as usual, indicating the euro-area economy with its manufacturing and services sectors remain in contraction, however, the rate of downturn is somehow bottoming out, suggesting a gradual recovery could be underway!
Meanwhile, investors continue to fret about the prospects for the Fed`s quantitative easing amid the ongoing debate whether to end the program by the end of this year. In Europe, market consensus expects a steady interest rate decision from European Central Bank`s tomorrow.
- French CAC 40 lost 0.46 percent to 3,907.70
- German DAX was down 0.34 percent at 8,267.85
- British FTSE 100 fell 0.51 percent to 6,524.83
Looking ahead, Britain will be in focus while policymakers at Bank of England meet to set the benchmark interest rate tomorrow. The BoE is expected to leave rates unchanged at 0.50 percent. Earlier today, PMI survey showed that Britain`s service output expanded at quicker pace in May.
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