Stocks in Europe fell on Monday, heading for their worst monthly losses in four years amid persistent investor concerns about slowing growth in China and the prospect of higher U.S. interest rates.
Falling share prices in Europe and Asia put pressure on the dollar, though weekend comments from U.S. Federal Reserve policymakers leaving the door open to a rate rise as soon as next month kept it well above last week’s seven-month lows.
U.S. stocks were expected to open lower, stock index futures showed.
Oil prices fell again both on the Fed rates outlook and as investors took profits on last week’s 10 percent rise.
Just last week, after a sharp fall in Chinese shares sent global stocks tumbling, a rise in U.S. rates for the first time since 2006 next month had seemed off the table.
However, senior Fed official Stanley Fischer said in a speech at the annual Jackson Hole symposium that U.S. inflation was likely to rebound, allowing rates to rise gradually.
The pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 stocks index fell 0.2 percent on Monday and, even though it has recouped all of last week’s losses, was on track for its worst monthly performance since August 2011. Germany’s DAX was down 0.6 percent and France’s CAC 40 down 0.8 percent, both also heading for their biggest monthly loss in four years.