European Markets Slip Down

The European markets opened lower on Tuesday, as the tensions in Iran weighed on market sentiment and investors stayed cautious for the first trading day of 2018.

Euro sign in front of a building
European markets went down in the first trading day of 2018.

The EURO STOXX fell 0.47 percent, France’s CAC 40 declined 0.52 percent, while Germany’s DAX 30 went down 0.81 percent.

Last Monday, the markets were nervous after Iranian protesters attacked police stations, marking the biggest challenge to the country’s clerical leadership since 2009.

Meanwhile, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un surprised the world observers by stating in his annual New Year’s Day address that he wished for a “peaceful resolution” with Seoul.

Financial stocks were broadly higher, as French lenders BNP Paribas and Societe Generale increased 0.55 percent and 0.57 percent, while the Commerzbank in Germany and Deutsche Bank advanced 0.44 percent and 1.10 percent.

Between peripheral lenders, the Intesa Sanpaolo in Italy and Unicredit increased 0.29 percent and 1.48 percent respectively, while the Spansih bank BBVA and Banco Santander soared 0.66 percent and 1.06 percent.

Allianz added to gains, with shares increased 0.22 percent after the inurer announced on Friday the gaining of a 49 percent stake in Liverpool Vitoria Friendly Society’s UK general insurance businesses, the first stage in the creation of the companies’ joint venture and strategic partnership.

In London, the FTSE 100 went up 0.26 percent, as UK lenders trailed their European counterparts higher.

The shares in the Royal Bank of Scotland and Barclays climbed 0.50 percent and 0.69 percent respectively, while the HSBC 
Holdings increased 0.70 percent and Lloyds Banking surged 2.31 percent.

Centrica was also on the upside, with shares amid reports the energy supplier is seeking a second joint venture partner to continue to boost its oil and gas production business after a recent deal with Bayerngas Norge in Germany.

However, in the mining sector, stocks were broadly lower. The shares in Fresnillo dropped and Anglo American fell 0.47 percent, while BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto tumbled 1.50 percent and 1.94 percent respectively.


Equity markets pointed to a mixed open in the U.S. The Dow Jones Industrial Average futures pointed to a 0.14 percent rise, S&P 500 futures signaled a 0.11 percent growth, while the Nasdaq 100 futures indicated a 0.07 percent drop.

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