European shares finished the day down three percent as investors reacted to a pessimistic forecast from the World Bank about a global recovery and as it cut its growth forecasts for most countries.
That sparked a decline in oil and metals prices which hit the value of energy and mining companies, though Anglo American was an exception following merger talk from Xstrata. US light crude and Brent fell over three percent and copper slipped to it’s lowest price in three weeks. British Airways was a big loser even though it had denied press speculation that it may need state aid because of its record annual loss and substantial pension deficit. French carmaker Renault suffered as Standard & Poor’s cut its credit rating and most of the heavyweight banking sector was lower.