Morning Market Mayhem

By Oliver Graham-Yooll

European markets slide after opening this morning hitting a five-year low as investors are slow to invest due to the economic slowdown, as fears grow over the Asian market.

The UK’s FTSE 100 opened this morning at 3800 and dropped 5.8% within the first few minutes of trading. A similar situation could be seen with the other main European banks with the CAC 40, Paris and the Dax, Frankfurt both falling 5%.

The decline was a result of the Asian markets, especially the Japanese Nikkei closing on a 23 year low.

This follows a weekend of reports of the pound falling to $1.5341 against the dollar and the Euro falling to $1.2377.

This blow to the European markets has upset the assumed stability that governments had hoped to achieve after last weeks turmoil and public investment.

“There’s lots of volatility, not just in the equity market, but in the interest rate and currency markets too,” said Neil Parker, market strategist at Royal Bank of Scotland.

The Japanese market closed trading last night at its lowest point since 1982. This comes despite the Yen trading at a 13 year high against the Dollar. With threats of the G7 intervening as the high trading value threatening global currencies, as foreign currency floods into the Japanese market.

Across Asia markets dropped up to 12% with the Philipines seconding biggest bank, Banco de Oro, reporting a loss of1.3bn Pesos (£12.3m) following the collapse of Lehman Brothers in America.

Oil prices have also toppled hitting a 17 month low with US crude oil prices falling from over $100 a barrel to $62 based on latest figures.

“There is more pain left. The global turmoil does not appear to be resolving soon,” said Atul Mehra at the brokerage J M Financial in Mumbai.