European Stock Lower; Covid Cases Higher

European stock markets are seen opening lower Monday, consolidating after recent gains amid rising Covid-19 cases globally.

At 2:05 AM ET (0705 GMT), the DAX futures contract in Germany traded 1.1% lower and the FTSE 100 futures contract in the U.K. fell 0.8%.

Many European countries are battling a surge in Covid-19 cases following the emergence of a new highly transmissible strain of the virus, racing to vaccinate their elderly, the most vulnerable members of society.

Cases are also increasing globally, with mainland China seeing its biggest daily increase in more than five months, the country’s national health authority said on Monday. This has prompted a lockdown in Shijiazhuang, the capital of the province of Hebei and the epicenter of the new outbreak.

China had recovered better than any other major economy from the Covid-19 hit, with the manufacturing sector, in particular, thriving as global consumers switched demand to (often Chinese-produced) goods from locally produced services.

Still, losses are likely to be limited following the solid start to 2021 as investors remain focused on the prospect for additional fiscal stimulus in the U.S. after a Democratic sweep of Congress. This remains the case even after the violent scenes on Capitol Hill last week that continue to reverberate.