Europe Markets

European shares close lower as commodities tumble

European shares close lower as commodities tumble

European shares closed lower on Monday with the falling price of major commodities weighing heavily on the mining and energy sectors.

Energy, mining stocks fall

The pan-European Euro Stoxx 600 Index closed provisionally lower with all major bourses in the red. The Brent crude oil price started the day on its its five-month losing streak, falling below $70. However, in afternoon trade, the commodity was up $1.15, or 1.7 percent, on reports that tumbling prices may have started to affect the fast-growing U.S. shale oil industry.

Tullow Oil sank 6 percent, Premier Oil lost nearly 1 percent and Seadrill were trading lower by 4 percent by close of play in Europe.

Miners like Anglo American also saw falls after the price of gold and silver fell during on Monday trading. Swiss voters rejected proposals to boost the country's gold reserves in a referendum Sunday, which sent metal prices tumbling.

Data released

In the U.S., Wall Street picked up the global trend with the Dow Jones Industrial Average, broader S&P 500 and the Nasdaq all trading weakly.

On the data front, euro zone manufacturing activity missed forecasts and slowed in November. Markit's euro zone manufacturing PMI was nearly flat at 50.1 in November, missing analysts' forecasts of 50.4. This was a fall from the 50.6 recorded in October. Three of the euro zone's largest economies – Germany, France and Italy – saw manufacturing activity contract in October.

Read More Euro zone manufacturing falls as Germany contracts

In the U.K., the Markit/CIPS manufacturing number came in at 53.5, better than forecasts above above October's figure of 53.3. Separate data from the Bank of England showed that mortgage approvals in the country have fallen to their lowest levels since June 2013.

Why oil will hit 'extremely high' prices despite rout

Altice shares gain

In stocks news, shares of German airline Lufthansa ended the day flat with a fresh pilot strike going ahead at the company.

Telecoms group Altice saw its shares rise nearly 8 percent after the renouncement of an agreement to buy Portugal Telecom.

Meanwhile, E.On shares climbed after the energy firm confirmed plans to split the company into two.

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