Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Stocks Slide in Asia, Europe on concerns about U.S.

The New York Times - PARIS — Shares in in Europe followed Asian indexes lower Tuesday on continued concern about the health of the corporate sector and the widening effects of the financial crisis.

In Europe, attention turned to the plight of lenders t active in Eastern Europe after Moody’s Investors Service said it might downgrade banks with units in the region. Investors are worried about the debts owed by banks in Eastern Europe to financial institutions in western European countries, especially Austria, Belgium, Germany, Greece and Italy.

“The effects of the slowdown are continuing to widen geographically, especially to countries that have been reliant on demand in the West,” said Henk Potts, equity strategist at Barclays Wealth in London.

Amid fears about exposure to Eastern Europe, Erste, a bank based in Vienna, lost 7.7 percent. Swedbank, based in Stockholm, fell 3.6 percent, while UniCredit, the Italian bank, lost 5 percent. http://www.nytimes.com/2009/02/18/business/18markets.html

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