European stocks finished the day lower for a third day running with investors moving into safe-haven government bonds.
Madrid was the worst performer, down 2.4 percent after Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services revised Spain’s outlook to negative from stable.
And Greek stocks were hammered after Fitch Ratings downgraded five Greek banks.
Continued worries over Dubai’s debt problems also pushed financial stocks sharply down across Europe.
Among the losers, Spain’s Santander and BBVA – both down four percent – as well as Barclays, Royal Bank of Scotland, UBS, Credit Suisse, Deutsche Bank Commerzbank and Deutsche Postbank.
Fortis, which holds Greek government bonds saw its shares fall after Fitch said it may downgrade the Belgian group’s rating.
The dollar is down and oil prices in the US picked up supported by industry data showing a big drop in reserves of crude there.