European stocks dropped on concern the euro-area debt crisis is deepening and as evidence mounted that China’s economy is slowing down. U.S. index futures and Asian shares also retreated.
Deutsche Lufthansa AG (LHA), Europe’s second-biggest airline, slipped 1.1 percent after Financial Times Deutschland reported the company may sell its catering unit. Q-Cells SE jumped 3.6 percent after a report that China’s Hanergy Solar Technology Ltd. will buy the German solar-cell and module maker’s subsidiary Solibro GmbH.
The Stoxx Europe 600 Index fell 0.7 percent to 233.53 at 8:15 a.m. in London. The benchmark measure has declined 14 percent from its 2012 high on March 16 amid growing concern that Greece will be forced to leave the euro currency union. Standard & Poor’s 500 Index futures expiring in June lost 0.6 percent. The MSCI Asia Pacific Index slid 2.3 percent.
“Sentiment has slumped after growth indicators failed to inspire markets on Friday,” Stan Shamu, a market strategist at IG Markets in Melbourne, wrote in an e-mail. “Lead indicators across the U.S., Europe and Asia are adding to fears of further economic weakness ahead in the global economy.”
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