European shares finished sharply lower ahead of this week US Federal Reserve meeting and the G20 summit.
Financial stocks were among top decliners. Investors are getting nervous about the lack of definitive signs to justify the market’s recent run-up. Oil was down over three percent on growing concerns about the pace of economic recovery and signs of weak fuel demand. In addition the US dollar strengthened so commodity prices slumped and as a result energy companies and miners dragged the indexes down. Royal Bank of Scotland fell on a report that it is talking to investors to gauge support for a “modest” sale of new shares of up to 4.4 billion euros. Volkswagen’s shares lost value on news that it is looking at taking a stake in Japanese carmaker Suzuki by the end of this year. In US merger news, computer maker Dell announced a 2.7 billion euro proposed takeover of Ross Perot’s IT services company Perot Systems. Dell’s share fell and Perot’s shot up.