October 20, 2020

Europe markets: new trade data

European equities opened flat Friday morning as investors digest new trade data and further tensions in the tech sector.

The pan-European Stoxx 600 edged just below the flatline at the start of trading, with autos falling 0.7% while telecoms climbed 0.6%.

In the meantime, Asian stocks were mostly lower ahead of Friday’s open in Europe. China’s General Administration of Customs said its dollar-denominated exports jumped 7.2% on-year in July — well above market expectations due to strong demand for medical supplies.

Meanwhile, there is also a strong focus on tech stocks after U.S. President Donald Trump issued Thursday executive orders that ban transactions with WeChat and TikTok in 45 days. 

The move sent shares of Tencent, which owns WeChat, down by 7% on Friday in the Hong Kong market.

In the health sector, the World Health Organization recalled Thursday that late-stage human trials don’t necessarily mean a Covid-19 vaccine will be widely distributed soon.

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