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Auto and banking stocks drop in European and London markets

UNITED STATES (OBSERVATORY NEWS)

European stocks fell on Monday, as auto makers were negatively affected by expectations of Chinese sales, while the market outperformed in London after weak economic data reinforced speculation that the Bank of England will cut interest.

Car stocks broke a four-day winning streak, down 0.9 percent. Renault led the fall, hitting a six-year low as investors fear that the 20-year cost-sharing alliance between the French company and Nissan could collapse in the absence of Carlos Ghosn.

The Association of Chinese Automobile Manufacturers earlier reiterated that car sales are likely to contract for the third year in a row in 2020, hurting the expectations of European manufacturers in one of their most important markets.

“We believe cars will remain a burden on the market for the foreseeable future, but we are seeing signs that (Chinese demand), if not improving, is at least not deteriorating,” said Andrea Cisioni, strategy director at TS Lampard.

The German DAX index, which is replete with shares of auto and auto parts exporters, fell 0.2 percent, slightly away from the highest level in nearly two years, which it recorded during the previous session.

Italy and Spain shares topped the losses in the region on the back of banks.

After last week sealing around 0.2 percent, the European Stoxx 600 index edged down 0.2 percent on Monday, extending its losses for the second session despite a rally in global markets.

Meanwhile, data released on Monday showed the British economy grew at its slowest annual pace in more than seven years in November, boosting expectations for a rate cut this month.

The FTSE 100 index of leading shares on the London Stock Exchange rose 0.4 percent.

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