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European stocks opened sharply lower on Monday, tracking a global selloff in equities that picked up speed on Friday, after a better-than-expected U.S. jobs report stoked fears about rising inflation and higher interest rates.
Germany’s DAX 30 index, dropped 0.62% to 12,706.34, while France’s CAC 40, fell 0.98% to 5,314.74. The U.K.’s FTSE 100 slipped 1.14% to 7,358.31.
UK services sector growth hit a 16-month low. The January figure was well below the expectations of analysts. UK Services purchasing managers’ index (PMI) showed a reading of 53.0 in January, down from 54.2 in December and lower than economist expectations of a figure of 54.1.
The weaker PMI reading reflected “a marked waning” in growth of demand for business and consumer-facing services such as hotels and restaurants.
“The pace of UK economic growth slowed sharply at the start of the year as January saw a triple whammy of weaker PMI surveys,” said Chris Williamson, chief business economist at IHS Markit, which compiles the survey.
“The softer service sector growth follows news of the manufacturing upturn losing momentum at the start of the year and a near-stagnant construction sector,” he added.
On the technical charts FTSE 100 is trading in the negative zone, testing the lower band of the Bollinger bands on the daily charts. Currently, the market is trading below all the moving averages (9 day, 20 day, 50 day, 100 day and 200 day). The RSI is at 42.83. The MACD has made a negative crossover below the signal line. The market is expected to trade in the negative zone.
Buy digital Put options between 7290 and 7270, valid until 23:00 GMT February 5th 2018