LONDON (AFP) –
European stocks tipped lower on Wednesday, despite earlier gains in Tokyo and overnight on Wall Street, as investors awaited a crucial G20 summit in London, dealers said.
Financial markets were also cautious on the eve of a likely eurozone interest rate cut from the European Central Bank.
In early morning trade, Frankfurt fell 1.75 percent, Paris shed 1.79 percent and London lost 1.72 percent in value. All three markets had rallied Tuesday on bargain-hunting.
Elsewhere Wednesday, the picture was brighter in Tokyo, where shares surged 2.99 percent, but Hong Kong pulled 0.42 percent lower.
"Markets could tread water until we get a clear message of intent from the G20 summit," said Chris Hossain, senior sales manager at ODL Securities.
US President Barack Obama arrived Wednesday for talks with British Prime Minister Gordon Brown on the eve of a crunch G20 summit aimed at fixing the battered global economy.
At the London summit, the United States wants to secure a coordinated international stimulus package -- but is facing a split with European countries such as France and Germany.
"As G20 leaders convene in London ahead of tomorrow's summit, there does not seem to be much hope of major concerted new stimulus measures emerging, though the summit is clearly putting pressure on countries to probe more deeply new national-level initiatives to support demand," said Barclays Capital analyst Julian Callow.
Britain, the eurozone, Japan and the United States are all mired in a deep recession that has been sparked by the global financial crisis and accompanying credit crunch.
In Wall Street action on Tuesday, US stocks rebounded after two consecutive trading days of heavy selling to post their first monthly gain in eight months even as economic data remained uninspiring.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average jumped 1.16 percent to end at 7,608.92 points as investors also went on "window dressing" their portfolios at the end of the first quarter on Tuesday.
Elsewhere in Asia on Wednesday, Seoul added 2.25 percent and Shanghai won 1.47 percent, while Sydney closed flat.
"The new quarter is set to start with a modest reversion in European equity markets as traders take stock of yesterday's bumper rally and also look to factor in that late selling on Wall Street," said CMC Markets dealer Matt Buckland.
"A fairly solid start to the month in Asia does suggest that there may be more upward momentum to be seen."