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LIVE MARKETS-European banks at lowest since 2009

Welcome to the home for real-time coverage of European equity markets brought to you by Reuters stocks reporters. You can share your thoughts with Thyagaraju Adinarayan (thyagaraju.adinarayan@tr.com), Joice Alves (joice.alves@tr.com), Julien Ponthus (julien.ponthus@tr.com) in London.


EUROPE'S BANKS AT LOWEST SINCE 2009 (1110 GMT)

European banks are down close to 4% and have now hit their lowest since 2009 as the coronavirus scare cuts deeper into global markets.

We're past bear territory with a fall of about 25% since February.

Seems there's a combination of straight recession fears (with all that means in terms of toxic NPLs quickly building up) and expectations of another ECB cut which would bite hard into margins again.

Germany's 10-y govt bond yield fell to -0.740%, which is very, very close to its record low of -0.743 of September 2019.

"The situation of the European banking sector is completely different from what it was in 2009", Jerome Legras, head of research at Axiom Alternative Investments just told us.

"There’s the psychological aspect of hitting the same level but I’m not more worried about their solvency than I was three weeks ago", he added.

"Profitability is a different story though..."

Take a look:



(Joice Alves and Julien Ponthus)

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OPENING SNAPSHOT: NOT THE TIME FOR TRAVEL & LEISURE (0823 GMT)

European bourses open in negative territory as coronavirus fears continue to drag down the stock market.

The pan European index is on track for its third straight day of declines and needless to say the travel and leisure space is lagging behind all the other sectors, down more than 3%.

In terms of single stocks, Italy's Prysmian started the day among the top movers, down almost 10%, after it warned that core profit will not grow this year, blaming trade tensions, higher tariffs and the coronavirus outbreak.

Capita's capitulation continues as brokers cut price targets after the company's update yesterday sent shares down 40%.


(Joice Alves)

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STOCKS TO WATCH: INFINEON, AIRBUS, ESSILORLUXOTTICA (0745 GMT)

Futures point to another blow for European bourses with 2% plus declines across the board as coronavirus anxiety continues to grip investors.

In the corporate world, Infineon in focus after a Bloomberg reported that Washington recommended Trump to block the German chipmaker's proposed $10 billion deal to buy Cypress Semiconductor as it poses a security risk.

Airbus shares could take a hit as it got zero orders for February due to coronavirus, but worth remembering that the recent sell-off has likely priced-in most of the bad news.

EssilorLuxottica is the other name to watch out for after the company said it expects is first-half revenues to be slower (I'd let you guess the why here).

Non-virus news: British pharma AstraZeneca seen down 2% after its combination treatment for a form of bladder cancer failed to meet the main goal.


(Thyagaraju Adinarayan)

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ANOTHER DAY, ANOTHER SELL-OFF (0637 GMT)

Stocks are seen opening sharply lower again today on top of yesterday's ugly sell-off that took bank stocks into bear market territory along with autos, travel & leisure and oil & gas.

The number of global coronavirus cases is fast approaching the 100k mark with fears of a massive economic damage sending shivers down investors' spine.

Financial spreadbetters IG expect London's FTSE to open 114 points lower at 6,592, Frankfurt's DAX to open 255 points lower at 11,690 and Paris' CAC to open 116 points lower at 5,246.

"Markets have shifted from pricing temporary China weakness to a more protracted global event, which will see a good chunk of global GDP go up in smoke," said Stephen Innes, chief market strategist at AxiCorp.


(Thyagaraju Adinarayan)

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(Reporting by Joice Alves, Julien Ponthus and Thyagaraju Adinarayan)