European stocks sank in opening deals on Friday in a fierce global selloff, after President Donald Trump's slapped tariffs on steel and aluminum imports — sparking fears of a trade war.
Markets have also been slammed this week after new Federal Reserve boss Jerome Powell fanned expectations of sharper-than-expected US interest rate hikes, while investors remain on edge before Sunday's election in Italy.
“Equity markets are ending the week facing a double whammy from a more hawkish Fed and the prospect of a trade war on the back of President Trump's imposition of steel and aluminum tariffs,” VTB Capital economist Neil MacKinnon told AFP.
In initial deals on Friday, London's benchmark FTSE 100 index of top blue-chip companies dropped almost 0.6 percent to 7,135.11 points compared with the closing level on Thursday.
In the Eurozone, Frankfurt's DAX 30 tanked 1.1 percent to 12,051.89 points, having tumbled by 2.2 percent on Thursday. The Paris CAC 40 meanwhile shed nearly 0.8 percent to 5,223.14.
In Italy, Milan's FTSE MIB shares index was 1.0 percent down at 22,233.40 points – AFP/APP