European Shares Seen Sharply Down, Tracking Asia

European shares are seen opening sharply lower on Wednesday, tracking falls in Asian equities as investors fretted about the health of the U.S. economy and oil prices hit a new high above $99 a barrel.

In Asia, Japan's Nikkei 225 Average fell 2.5 percent, ending at a 16-month low.

European shares are seen sliding following strong gains in the previous session, when the pan-European FTSEurofirst ended up 1.2 percent, paring Monday's loss of more than 2 percent.

Financial bookmakers in London see Britain's FTSE down as much as 1 percent, Germany's DAX down as much as 0.8 percent and France's CAC as much as 0.9 percent lower.