European Shares Seen Opening Lower On Growth Worries

European stocks may open a tad lower on Wednesday amid growth worries after the International Monetary Fund warned the global economy will this year likely suffer the worst recession since the Great Depression.

The Washington-based organization now expects the global economy to contract by 3 percent in 2020 as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.

The U.S. reported at least 2,405 new deaths linked to Covid-19 on Tuesday, the most fatalities in a single-day since the epidemic began. Japan recorded 457 new infections, taking the total number of infections across the country to 8,812.

Confirmed infections of coronavirus have more than tripled to climb above 10,000 in Peru over the past week, the South American country’s health ministry reported.

There are over 1.9 million confirmed cases worldwide, with the death toll reaching 126,604 as of Wednesday morning.

U.S. President Donald Trump has halted funding to the World Health Organization over its handling of the coronavirus pandemic, saying the Geneva-based organization has failed in its basic duty and must be held accountable.

Asian markets are trading mixed this morning as concerns over the earnings season offset optimism that infections and deaths have begun stabilizing in Italy, Spain and other places around Europe.

U.S. healthcare giant Johnson & Johnson reported better-than-expected Q1 results, while financial giants JPMorgan and Wells Fargo reported weaker than expected first quarter earnings.

Bank of America, Citigroup, Goldman Sachs and UnitedHealth are among the companies due to release their quarterly results before the opening bell later in the day.

The dollar nursed losses while gold hovered near seven-year highs on safe-haven demand. Oil prices rose over 1 percent in Asian trading on hopes for massive purchasing by consumer countries for their strategic stockpiles on a scale not before seen.

U.S. stocks rose sharply overnight to reach their best closing levels in over a month as investors cheered signs of a flattening of the coronavirus curve and reports suggested that ten U.S. states began working on plans to reopen for business.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rallied 2.4 percent, the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite spiked 4 percent and the S&P 500 surged 3.1 percent.

European markets rose in their longest rally since November on Tuesday as China trade data topped forecasts and the number of new coronavirus cases appeared to have peaked in the U.S., the eurozone and the U.K.

The pan European Stoxx 600 gained 0.6 percent. The German DAX climbed 1.3 percent and France’s CAC 40 index rose 0.4 percent, while the U.K.’s FTSE 100 shed 0.9 percent.

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