World Economy

European Equities Close Lower

European Equities Close LowerEuropean Equities Close Lower

European equities closed largely lower, in the wake of declines in Asian markets and falls in shares of two major banks — HSBC in the UK and Deutsche Bank in Germany.

The pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 closed around 0.5 percent lower, having hit a three-and-a-half month low during the session, CNBC reported.

London’s FTSE 100 closed around 0.5 percent lower, while the GermanDAX closed down around 0.6 percent and the French CAC closed only 0.2 percent lower. Some peripheral markets closed higher, including Greece’s stocks.

Market attention in the UK was on HSBC, after Europe’s biggest bank announced plans to cut costs by as much as $5 billion within two years, laying off as many as 25,000 staff. It also plans to sell its Turkey and Brazil operations and increase its investments in Asia.

“We recognize that the world has changed and we need to change with it,” the bank’s chief executive, Stuart Gulliver, remarked in a statement.

Shares of HSBC close around 0.9 percent down after the news, placing them near the lower end of the UK benchmark FTSE 100.

Deutsche Bank shares closed down around 1.9 percent on Tuesday on the news that prosecutors had searched the bank’s offices in Frankfurt. The bank said that no employees at the company were being targeted in the raid.

Elsewhere, Greece continued to rattle sentiment. The country’s international creditors have suggested extending the country’s bailout program until the end of March 2016, but disagreements over the conditions attached to the continued support and what would happen afterward risk undermining that plan, three people familiar with the negotiations told Reuters on Monday.

US stocks were trading in a narrow range on Tuesday when Europe markets closed, as higher bond yields weighed and investors sought further insight on the timing of a rate hike from economic data.

In Asia, equities turned lower on Tuesday, as downbeat inflation data from China and the prospect of higher US interest rates sooner rather than later weighed on sentiment.