European shares fell for a third consecutive session on Wednesday. Losses in healthcare and construction stocks went against a lift from positive earnings from consumer company Nestle and telecoms equipment maker Ericsson.
Patrick Moonen, principal strategist in the multi-asset team at NN Investment Partners, told Reuters: “Earnings have been generally well above expectations, and guidance has been a positive surprise.”
He added: “But there are other elements that are currently at play and may have a bigger impact on the market performance than earnings.”
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FTSE 100: European stocks to plummet as coronavirus restrictions take toll on sentiment
10.40am: European stocks plummet
European markets have fallen this morning, with the Euronext 100, CAC 40, DAX and Swiss Market Index all down.
Euronext is down 1.51%, CAC is down 1.53%, DAX is down 0.76% and Swiss Market is down 0.29%.
9.00am update: Currency latest
The pound at 9am was 1.3136 dollars compared to 1.3146 dollars at the previous close.
The euro at 9am was 0.9032 pounds compared to 0.9031 pounds at the previous close.
8.40am: FTSE plummets on open
The FTSE has dropped on open this morning, despite yesterday’s positive Brexit negotiations news.
The UK index has dropped 40 points in 40 minutes, falling from an open of 5,776 to 5,736.
It had fallen as low as 5,726 before rebounding slightly.
7.45am update: Pound set to soar
The pound sterling is set to soar after the UK/EU Brexit standoff ended last night.
Michel Barnier will visit London today to restart talks after they juddered to a halt last week.
The announcement means the pound is set for its highest daily gain since March.
7.15am update: Rishi Sunak to make major announcement
The Chancellor is set to announce a new support package for businesses affected by Tier 2 restrictions, according to reports.
Rishi Sunak will unveil a new plan to help firms, particularly pubs and restaurants, who have seen their trade drop as a result of the social restrictions in the “high” Covid-19 category.
Currently businesses in Tier 2 areas such as London and Birmingham do not benefit from the same Government aid as those in Tier 3, including business grants and higher wage subsidies, because they can remain open.
Mr Sunak will make a statement to the Commons on Thursday morning and the Telegraph reported he will unveil financial measures to help Tier 2 firms following complaints from industry leaders and MPs that thousands of jobs were at risk ahead of Christmas.