European shares on track for worst week in 5 months
European shares steadied in early trading on Friday as a rise in mining stocks on the back of firmer metals prices underpinned the market, although some major stock indexes remained set for their worst week in about five months.
The pan-European STOXX Europe 600 index was up 0.05 percent by 0712 GMT. However, it has fallen more than 3 percent so far this week and remained on track for its biggest weekly percentage drop since the middle of February.
However, miners were in demand, with the STOXX Europe 600 Basic Resources index rising 1.1 percent, the top sectoral gainer, after prices of major industrial metals advanced. Rio Tinto, Anglo American and Glencore rose 1.1 to 2.2 percent.
Among other sharp movers, Air France-KLM fell 4.2 percent after saying its June traffic fell 2.1 percent, while TDC rose 6 percent after financial daily Borsen reported a foreign buyout house was eyeing a possible takeover of Denmark's top telecom operator.
Asian stocks deepened losses and the Japanese yen strengthened against the greenback on Friday as investors dumped riskier assets and fled to safe havens after four police officers were killed and others wounded in the United States.
Snipers opened fire on police during rallies in Dallas to protest against the fatal shooting of two black men this week.
U.S. stock futures ESc1 dipped 0.2 percent, and European markets were set to open flat to lower.
Markets had already been on edge after a steady stream of negative news this week in the form of rising Brexit uncertainty and a growing crisis in Italian banks. Investment managers sought shelter in the U.S. dollar, Treasuries and gold, signaling a rocky start to the second half of the year.
MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan .MIAPJ0000PUS was down 0.6 percent. For the week, it is set to fall 1 percent, its biggest weekly drop since June. 19. Hong Kong stocks .HSI led losers with a fall of 1 percent.
Japan's Nikkei .N225 fell 0.9 percent.