European stocks were trading with sharp losses, tracking weakness in Asian markets amid renewed speculations that the U.S. Federal Reserve may start rolling back its monetary stimulus program.
Investors continued to move out of equity markets ahead of the release of the minutes of the Federal Reserve's Open Market Commitee July meeting, which will be released tomorrow. Traders are looking for further cues as to when the Fed plans to start scaling back its monthly bond-purchase program.
Talks of the central bank tapering its massive stimulus program gained ground after upbeat U.S. data released last week hinted the country is back on track to economic growth.
Stocks on the Move
Financials stocks underwent sharp selling pressure. Societe Generale SA and Credit Agricole SA fell over 3% while BNP Paribas SA lost 2.3%.
German banking giant Deutsche Bank AG erased 2.1% while Commerzbank AG plunged nearly 4%.
In London, Lloyds Banking Group Plc. moved 2.5% down while Barclays Plc. was off 1.4%
Resources added to the losses. Top miner BHP Billiton Plc. lost 3.2% after reporting a 30% decline in annual profit, while Glencore Xstrata Plc. slumped 3.7% after the miner posted a net loss in the first half of the year.
Building materials company CRH Plc. tanked 5.7% after the company reported that it fell into a pretax loss for the six months ended June 30.