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Last Updated: Monday, 18 April, 2005, 16:10 GMT 17:10 UK
Shares fall sharply across Europe
Frankfurt trader
Traders across Europe have seen falling shares
Stocks across Europe fell sharply on Monday after a number of negative factors accentuated the after-effects of Wall Street's Friday falls.

The Dow Jones saw its heaviest one-day loss for two years on Friday, hit by surprise poor results from IBM.

The decline knocked the technology sector across Europe, and was exacerbated by equally poor figures from Dutch electronics firm Philips.

Germany's Dax ended down 2.6%, Paris' Cac by 2.1%, and the FTSE by 1.3%.

Slump fears

Shares in Philips dropped 3.6% in early exchanges after it reported a 79% drop in first quarter profits, blaming weak semiconductor sales and the falling prices of flat panel televisions.

Added to IBM's results coming in below market expectations last week, there is concern among investors that the sector could be seeing the beginning of a slump.

At Monday's close, Germany's Dax was down 2.6% or 110 points to 4,202.2, while in Paris the Cac 40 lost 2.1% or 82.7 points to end at 3,949.6.

In London the FTSE 100 gave up 1.3% or 64.5 points to 4,827.1, further hit by investor concern that demand had peaked for steel giant Corus, whose shares finished down 1.5%.

Diplomatic dispute

Shares in Italian car maker Fiat were temporarily suspended after they dropped 10% to a new all-time low on reduced confidence in European car sales.

The loss-making firm is struggling to turn around its fortunes, and analysts said investors were worried that the company had postponed an annual shareholders meeting without giving a clear reason.

Earlier on Monday, Japan's Nikkei 225 had seen its biggest one-day percentage loss since 10 May, 2004.

In addition to the knock-on effect of Wall Street's declines fuelling investor concern at a possible economic slowdown in the US, the Nikkei was affected by the ongoing diplomatic spat between Japan and China.

China is angry that new Japanese school textbooks gloss over Japanese atrocities in China in the 1930s, and Japanese investors are concerned that the row could hit Japan's trade with China, its largest trading partner.

However, Japanese financial analysts said concern at a possible slowdown in US consumer spending was the main factor weighing down investors.


FTSE 100
23.70 0.44%
19.54 0.34%
Cac 40
14.48 0.38%
Dow Jones
78.53 0.76%
35.31 1.58%
S&P 500
11.22 1.02%
BBC Global 30
20.65 0.36%
Data delayed by at least 15 minutes

Philips hit by flat-screen fall
18 Apr 05 |  Business
China row hits Japanese markets
18 Apr 05 |  Business
IBM profit report shocks market
15 Apr 05 |  Business
Samsung profits hit by low prices
15 Apr 05 |  Business

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