European stock markets commenced Monday’s session on a negative note, mimicking weaker trading in markets overseas.
The pan-European Stoxx 600 was off by 0.35 percent with every sector trading in red. Auto stocks were the worst performers, down by 1.3 percent, as trade concerns weighed on sentiment. European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker is heading to the White House this week in an attempt to persuade the U.S. not to impose tariffs on European carmakers. The meeting comes after finance leaders from the world’s 20 biggest economies failed to reach a significant agreement on trade at a meeting over the weekend.
Furthermore, auto stocks were also impacted by news that Fiat Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne has been replaced abruptly after nearly a decade at the helm, due to concerns around his health. Fiat Chrysler was down by 4 percent in early deals and Ferrari, which was also led by Marchionne, dropped about 5 percent on the news.
Looking across the European index, Ryanair shares dropped to the bottom of the benchmark on earnings. The airline reported Monday that the average fares would be lower than expected this summer amid market competition and uncertainty caused by several strikes.
The entire travel and leisure was under pressure in early trade, not only due to earnings but also rating downgrades. Air France-KLM dropped 2 percent, after Barclays cut the price target on the stock.
Julius Baer was also down by about 4 percent after reporting its latest results. The Swiss private bank warned that market conditions have become more cautious amid rising trade tensions.