European shares cautiously dip ahead of Trump-Biden debate

Tuesday, 29 September 2020

European stock markets opened lower on Tuesday as a rebound in the previous session fizzled out, with investors remaining cautious ahead of the first US presidential debate.

The pan-European STOXX 600 600 slipped 0.5 per cent in early deals after recording its biggest single-day gain in three months on Monday, reports Reuters.

Growth-sensitive sectors such as banks, automakers and travel & leisure, were down between 1.0 per cent and 1.4 per cent and led the declines as the global death toll from COVID-19 pandemic crossed 1.0 million, according to a Reuters tally.

While there were some signs of progress in talks over a fresh US coronavirus relief bill, investors were mostly in a wait-and-see mode as US Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden and President Donald Trump looked set to square off in their first debate in Cleveland, five weeks before the election.

Among individual movers, Air France KLM fell 3.9 per cent after HSBC downgraded the stock to “reduce” from “hold”.

British plumbing parts distributor Ferguson jumped 6.3 per cent as it restored its dividend after a series of cost-reduction measures and resilience in its main US business helped it report a 4.1 per cent rise in annual profit.