European stock markets sold off Monday, after last week’s strong gains, following an illustration of the depth of the slowdown in Germany and weak trade data from China.
At 3:50 AM ET (0750 GMT), the DAX in Germany traded 0.9% lower, after gaining almost 10% last week. France’s CAC 40 fell 0.8%, compared with gains of 8% last week, while the U.K.’s FTSE index was down 0.4%, after gaining just under 5% last week.
Germany’s industrial production data slumped almost 18% in April, data released Monday showed, emphasizing the extent of the recession the euro area’s largest economy is facing even though lockdown restrictions are now being eased.
On top of this, the weekend saw disappointing trade data out of the globe’s second largest economy, China, a major trading partner with Europe. China’s exports contracted in May by 3.3% from a year earlier, while imports tumbled 16.7%, the sharpest decline since January 2016.
This has tended to overshadow Friday’s surprise increase of 2.5 million in U.S. non-farm payrolls, against expectations of an 8 million drop.
In corporate news, AstraZeneca slipped 2.4% after Bloomberg reported it had approached U.S. rival Gilead Sciences about a possible merger to form one the world’s largest drug companies.
German card payments company Wirecard dropped 3.3% after prosecutors opened proceedings against its entire management board as part of a market manipulation probe.
Also, Intesa Sanpaolo gained 2% after saying it has received authorization from the European Central Bank to acquire a controlling majority inUnione di Banche Italiane. The takeover will create Italy’s largest bank.
Oil prices have pushed higher Monday, following the news over the weekend that the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and its allies, including Russia, agreed to extend record oil production cuts until the end of July.
At 2:00 AM ET, U.S. crude futures traded 1.2% higher at $40.01 a barrel. The international benchmark Brent contract rose 1.4% to $42.90.
Elsewhere, gold futures rose 0.8% to $1,696.45/oz, while EUR/USD traded at 1.1305, up 0.2%.