Europe Markets

Europe ends lower as Glencore sinks 29%, VW weighs

European equities ended sharply lower on Monday as concerns over carmaker Volkswagen and miner Glencore continued to dent investor sentiment.

The pan-European Stoxx Europe 600 index ended around 2.2 percent lower, sinking further after U.S. stocks fell over 1 percent.

The FTSE 100 ended 2.5 percent lower, weighed down by London-listed miners, which are a heavily weighted part of the U.K. index.

Germany's DAX finished down 2.1 percent, hit hard by the autos. France's CAC ended down around 2.8 percent.

European markets

Leading the losses was London-listed miner Glencore, which was the worst performer of all the major European stocks. Its shares plummeting 29 percent, its biggest intraday move on record.

This followed a note from Investec Securities that questioned "how much value will be left for equity holders (of big mining companies) if commodity prices do not improve."

"If major commodity prices remain at current levels, our analysis implies that in the absence of substantial restructuring, nearly all the equity value of both Glencore and Anglo American could evaporate," Investec analysts said.

Anglo American shares tanked more than 10 percent on the news and other mining companies were also shaken up, with Lonmin ending down around 15 percent and and BHP Billiton down 6 percent.

Meanwhile, shares of Volkswagen closed around 7.5 percent lower after the company's Audi division said 2.1 million cars were affected in the emissions scandal surrounding the German company. VW-owned Porsche was also down 6.9 percent.

Elsewhere, shares of London-listed Vodafone ended down around 4.8 percent, after the world's second largest mobile operator said on Monday it had ended talks with Liberty Global about an exchange of assets.

Swiss regulator launches probe

Glencore sells nickel project in Brazil for $8 million
Glencore sells nickel project in Brazil for $8 million

Shares of major European banks were also in focus after the Swiss competition regulator said on Monday that it had opened an investigation into possible manipulation of the precious metals market by several major banks including UBS, Julius Baer, Deutsche Bank, HSBC, Barclays,Morgan Stanley and Mitsui. Shares of London-listed HSBC and Barclays closed down 2.9 and 3.8 percent, respectively.

Shares of oil giant Shell ended down 2.6 percent after the company said it would stop exploration activity in Alaska for the "foreseeable future."

Oil in general worried investors Monday, as prices slumped despite evidence suggesting U.S. production was slowing. Both Brent crude and U.S. WTI crude traded well over 2 percent lower on the day.

In other news, pro-independence parties won a clear majority of seats in Catalonia's parliament in a regional election on Sunday. The vote was widely-seen as a litmus test on pro-independence sentiment and the result has set the wealthy north-eastern Spanish region on a collision course with Spain's central government.

Outside of Europe, official statistics showed Chinese industrial profits declined 8.8 percent on the year in August, fueling investor fears surrounding global growth.

In the U.S., stocks traded about 1 percent lower on Monday as uncertainty about the timing of a U.S. Federal Reserve interest rate hike and concerns about global economic growth continued to weigh on sentiment.

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