European stocks were sharply lower on Wednesday as oil prices continued to fall and investors remained concerned over slower global economic growth. In morning trade, France’s CAC 40 fell 2.97%, Euro Stoxx 50 fell 2.91%, and Germany’s DAX 30 tumbled 2.91%.
Oil prices fell below $30 per barrel on Tuesday, weakening sentiment, as the International Energy Agency reported that unseasonably warm weather in the winter and increasing supply will drag out the oil glut until late 2016.
Investors were also cautious after China released data showing that it’s annual rate of growth slowed to just 6.8%. The new data indicates that China’s economic growth is continuing its slowdown.
Energy stocks were lower across the board, with Norway’s Statoil (STO: NO) falling 3.79%, Italy’s (MI: ENI) declining 1.91%, and France’s Total SA (PA: TOTF) plunging 2.86%.
Financial stocks contributed to losses, with France’s Societe Generale (PA: SOGN) and BNP Paribas (PA: BNPP) falling 3.35% and 3.11% respectively. In Germany, Commerzbank (DE: CBKG) fell 4.13%, and Deutsche Bank (DE: DBKGn) lost 2.91%.
In Italy, Unicredit (MI: CRDI) was down 3.89%, and Intensa Sanpaolo (MI: ISP) tumbled 2.81%. Spain’s Banco Santander (MC: SAN) lost 2.55%, while BBVA (MC: BBVA) fell 2.76%.
The FTSE 100 in London fell 2.16% as the mining sector experienced major losses.