Equities on Lows as European Trade Ends
04-Feb-13 11:30 ET
[BRIEFING.COM] The major averages continue to trade within points of their respective lows as the European session draws to a close. The old continent was in focus this morning as regional indices experienced a broad sell-off. Markets in Italy and Spain led the declines with Italy's MIB falling nearly 4.0% while Spain's IBEX lost over 3.0%. In Italy, financials fell 6.0% in aggregate as regulators in Trani continue to investigate the country's banks. Meanwhile, Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy has been the subject of corruption allegations made by El Pais, Spain's largest daily newspaper.
U.S. financials are trading lower following the weakness observed in their European counterparts. The SPDR Financial Select Sector ETF (XLF 17.44, -0.17) is down 1.0% and the ETF represents the weakest S&P 500 sector.
Also of note, microprocessor manufacturers, which outperformed in early trade, have now recoupled with the broader market. The PHLX Semiconductor Index is down 0.7%.
With today's selling pressure, the CBOE Volatility Index (VIX 14.00, +1.10) is adding nearly 9.0%. Across the futures complex, February and April contracts are seeing the most notable rise.