European Stocks Open Lower as Drop in German Manufacturing Drags on Trading Sentiment

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European equity benchmarks opened lower on Thursday as factory orders in the eurozone's largest economy contracted and continued uncertainty over US-Canada trade relations rattled investors.

Manufacturing new orders fell by 0.9% in Germany in July when compared to June, fresh data published by Destatis, Germany's federal statistics agency, showed. New orders were also down 0.9% from the corresponding month of the prior year.

As the largest economy in the Eurozone and a key player influencing trade in the region, fluctuations in progress within manufacturing, one of the country's key industries stands to influence market sentiment.

Meanwhile, talks resumed on Wednesday on the creation of a new North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) with Canada's role in the future accord remaining uncertain. The discussions follow the White House announcing last week that it had secured a preliminary trade agreement with Mexico. Over the weekend, US President Trump, an outspoken critic of the original NAFTA deal, had tweeted that there was "no political necessity to keep Canada in the new NAFTA deal".

In equities, miners were leading the decliners on London's FTSE 100 Index, with BHP Billiton (BLT.L, BBL) and Glencore (GLEN) 3.6% and 1.6% lower, respectively. Online shopping company Ocado (OCDO) was 1.0% lower and Land Securities ( LAND ) was down by 0.4%.

On Frankfurt's DAX, chip manufacturer Infineon (IFX.DE) was 2.9% lower, Commerzbank (CBK.DE) was down by 1.3% and chemicals and consumer goods company Bayer (BAYN.DE) was 0.9% lower. And, on Paris' CAC-40, Sodexo (SW.PA) was 3.2% lower, spirits producer Pernod Ricard (RI.PA) was down by 1.3% and semiconductor manufacturer STMicroelectronics ( STM ) was 1.2% lower.

The pan-European Stoxx 600 Index edged 0.38% lower, London's FTSE 100 Index was down by 0.31%, Frankfurt's DAX was 0.37% lower and Paris' CAC-40 was down by 0.10% shortly after the open.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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This article appears in: Investing , Stocks
Referenced Symbols: LAND , STM , DAX

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