- A fresh set of troublingly poor data out of China had investors running for cover on Monday, with all major stock indexes around the world losing ground on the week’s first trading day.
- Trade data showed that the value of Chinese imports and exports fell heavily in the year to December.
- Stocks around the world were lower, with futures pointing to losses of as much as 1.2% for the Nasdaq.
- European and Asian shares have also dropped, with the market further hindered by thin liquidity in Asia amid a Japanese public holiday.
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A fresh set of troublingly poor data out of China had investors running for cover on Monday, with all major stock indexes around the world losing ground on the week’s first trading day.
The value of Chinese imports and exports fell heavily in the year to December, adding to a lengthening list of evidence that all is not well in the world’s second-largest economy.
According to China’s General Administration of Customs, the value of exports tumbled 7.6% from a year earlier in US dollar terms, coming in well below the median economist forecast offered to Reuters for an increase of 5%.
Imports also fell, and the year-on-year drops were the largest since the second half of 2016.
“Weaker than expected trade figures are immediately weighing on commodity and equity markets and associated currency baskets,” Stephen Innes, the head of trading in the Asia Pacific region for Oanda, said in an email. “Sorry, no frontloading in this data to hang one’s hat on!”
Stocks were not helped by thin liquidity in Asia amid a Japanese public holiday.
Here is the roundup:
- All major indexes in China witnessed losses close to 1%, with a 0.98% fall from the China A50 index the biggest drop on the mainland. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng lost about 1.6% of its value.
- European stocks also started on the back foot Monday, with all major indexes deep in negative territory. Losses were generally hovering between 0.8% and 1.2%, with the Euro Stoxx 50 broad index dropping 0.9% as of 11:45 a.m. GMT (6:45 a.m. ET).
- The FTSE MIB, the benchmark Italian index, was down 1.3%, while Britain’s FTSE 100 was 1.1% off.
- Sliding sentiment in Europe and Asia seemed likely to affect US trading later when the market opened across the Atlantic later in the day. Futures pointed to significant falls in all three major US indexes.
- The Nasdaq looked to be the worst off, set to open 1.2% lower. The S&P 500 and Dow Jones Industrial Average were set to trade about 0.9% down at the open.
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