European stocks weaken on economic gloom, before US earnings

  • Karpal and I never quarrelled even though we belonged to different parties, says Ling
    Karpal and I never quarrelled even though we belonged to different parties, says Ling

    Bukit Gelugor MP Karpal Singh and former transport minister Tun Dr Ling Liong Sik never quarrelled or fought, despite being in different parties with competing ideas about politics. This was because the former MCA chairman and the late DAP stalwart had forged a friendship at university, which Dr Ling said stood the tests that politics threw at... …

  • Law students hold candlelight vigil for Karpal
    Law students hold candlelight vigil for Karpal

    A group of first-year law students held a candlelight vigil at the Esplanade in George Town, Penang, tonight for their idol, the late Bukit Gelugor MP Karpal Singh. The students had planned an impromptu vigil for Karpal, who they credited with inspiring them to take up law as a career choice. “We planned the event on Facebook and word got... …

  • Michael Cornelius — Karpal’s loyal ‘other half’
    Michael Cornelius — Karpal’s loyal ‘other half’

    GEORGE TOWN, April 18 — Karpal Singh’s loyal aide Michael Cornelius Selvam Vellu, who also died in the accident that killed Karpal yesterday, was almost like Karpal’s “other half”. The trained... …

  • Umno lawyer calls Karpal ‘one of the most ethical criminal lawyers’
    Umno lawyer calls Karpal ‘one of the most ethical criminal lawyers’

    Umno lawyer Tan Sri Muhammad Shafee Abdullah had plenty of encounters in the courts with the late Karpal Singh but today, he paid tribute to the veteran lawyer who died in an accident yesterday. Shafee said Karpal was “one of the most ethical criminal lawyers” he used to appear with while acting as deputy public prosecutor or counsel for the... …

  • Gerakan calls Karpal elder statesman, Samy Vellu cries over news of death
    Gerakan calls Karpal elder statesman, Samy Vellu cries over news of death

    In an ultimate accolade, Gerakan, DAP’s political rival in Penang, today praised Karpal Singh as an elder statesman and a true Malaysian. State Gerakan deputy president Datuk Dr Cheah Soon Hai said Karpal was one of the few people in the country who had left a legacy. He said the former DAP chairman was a legend in both the political and... …

  • Abdullah pays tribute to Karpal’s life of service – Bernama
    Abdullah pays tribute to Karpal’s life of service – Bernama

    Former prime minister Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi said Karpal Singh, who died in a road accident yesterday, led a life of tireless commitment and service to the people.  “We are poorer for the loss of a great legal mind and a crusader for justice and human rights," he said as he extended condolences to the family of the former DAP chairman and... …

Europe's main stock markets slid on Wednesday as investor sentiment was hit by more gloomy economic news ahead of key US banking results from Goldman Sachs and JPMorgan, dealers said.

London's FTSE 100 index of top companies fell 0.53 percent to 6,084.89 points in late morning deals, Frankfurt's DAX 30 index lost 0.35 percent to 7,649.01 points and in Paris the CAC 40 shed 0.37 percent to 3,683.50.

Weighing on the euro was a report quoting Jean-Claude Juncker, head of the eurozone finance ministers' group and Luxembourg's prime minister, as saying that the euro's value was "dangerously high."

The European single currency slipped to $1.3271 from $1.3304 late in New York on Wednesday. On the London Bullion Market, gold prices decreased to $1,677.85 an ounce from $1,680.50.

"Europe picked up pretty much where they left yesterday as Asia provided no support and the World Bank slashed its 2013 global growth forecast and European car sales for December fell," said trader Anita Paluch at Gekko Global Markets.

"With markets looking slightly overbought, traders are moving to safer assets. Financials will be in focus today as Goldman Sachs and JP Morgan Chase are due to release their results today," she added.

European equities had taken a knock on Tuesday after weaker-than-expected 2012 economic growth data for Germany.

In another heavy blow on Wednesday, the eurozone powerhouse slashed its official 2013 growth forecast to 0.4 percent, compared with the prior estimate of 1.0 percent. However, it also forecast a solid rebound in 2014.

Adding to weak sentiment, the World Bank cut its 2013 global economic growth forecast to 2.4 percent, from the previous figure of 3.0 percent, and described the recovery as "fragile and uncertain".

And in more downbeat news, industry data showed on Wednesday that European auto sales plunged to their lowest point in 17 years in 2012, while French carmaker Renault announced a new raft of 7,500 job cuts.

New car registrations in the European Union fell by 8.2 percent from their 2011 level to 12.05 million units last year, the European Automobile Manufacturers' Association said.

The news weighed on the automaking sector, with Renault shares sliding 1.53 percent to 40.95 euros in Paris deals. Germany's Daimler and Volkswagen saw their share prices drop by 0.61 percent and 0.43 percent, to stand at 43.52 euros and 174.75 euros respectively.

Asian stock markets closed lower on Wednesday as dealers took profits following recent gains, with Tokyo also suffering heavy losses as the yen rebounded strongly after weeks of steep declines.

Suppliers of Boeing's Dreamliner slid in Tokyo after two Japanese airlines grounded their fleets of the aircraft after one made an emergency landing, but shares of the carriers themselves did not take a big hit.

Analysts said that Boeing, which is traded mainly in New York, would likely be the focus of investor concern.

Tokyo stocks plunged 2.56 percent, Shanghai slipped 0.70 percent, Seoul dropped 0.32 percent, and Hong Kong finished 0.10 percent lower, while Sydney gained 0.46 percent in value.

"European equities are trading slightly lower this morning... with pressure arising out of Asia overnight where the recent rapid ascent especially in Japan has come to an abrupt halt due to profit taking and a stronger Japanese yen," said ETX Capital analyst Markus Huber.

"There is very little new data out in Europe today, the main focus instead will be on US corporate earnings with banking heavyweights Goldman Sachs and JPMorgan due to report quarterly figures," he added.

burs-rfj/bcp/hd

Follow @YahooMalaysia on LINE for daily news updates.

Comments on Yahoo pages are subject to our link to Comments Guidelines. You are responsible for any content that you post. Yahoo is not responsible or liable in any way for comments posted by its users. Yahoo does not in any way endorse or support comments made by its users.

  • Told to ‘shut up’ on Twitter, Zul Noordin lashes back at Khairy The Malay Mail Online
    Told to ‘shut up’ on Twitter, Zul Noordin lashes back at Khairy

    KUALA LUMPUR, April 18 — A feud is breaking out between former Perkasa vice president Datuk Zulkifli Noordin and Umno Youth chief Khairy Jamaluddin on Twitter. Told unequivocally by the minister... …

  • Langkawi BN MP pokes fun at Karpal Singh’s remains The Malaysian Insider
    Langkawi BN MP pokes fun at Karpal Singh’s remains

    As the nation mourns the passing of a great politician, BN MP Datuk Nawawi Ahmad insulted the late Karpal Singh by posting a picture of the veteran politician's blood-smeared face as he lay in his Toyota Alphard following a tragic accident this morning. Along with the Facebook picture was a newspaper cutting on Karpal being opposed to the... …

  • Karpal’s car crashed into lorry, not the other way around, says Perak police The Malaysian Insider
    Karpal’s car crashed into lorry, not the other way around, says Perak police

    Initial investigations have revealed that Karpal Singh’s Toyota Alphard crashed into a five-ton lorry in the accident yesterday that claimed his life and that of his assistant, Perak police said today. State police chief Datuk Acryl Sani Abdullah Sani also dismissed rumours and speculation that the accident was caused by the lorry crashing... …