European main equity indices closed mostly lower on Monday despite a marginal increase in July industrial production as mining stocks contracted following a sharp drop in key industrial metals, and as investors maintained their focus on the Federal Reserve’s key meeting on Thursday.
On Monday, Eurostat, the European Union’s statistics office reported that Euro-area seasonally adjusted industrial production in July rose 0.6% relative to June, after decreasing 0.3% month-on-month in June. Industrial production in the EU28 rose 0.3% in July after sliding 0.1% month-on-month in June. The increase in July was primarily due to higher volumes of capital, energy and durable consumer goods. Investors remain anxious ahead of the Federal Reserve’s Sept. 17 meeting, with market analysts and forecasters still divided on expectations of a possible rate hike on Thursday.
In company news, mining companies fell following a sharp drop in prices of key industrial metals. Copper prices fell over 1% after data out of China showed that factory output increased at a weaker-than-expected rate. In the U.K., supermarket operator Morrison Supermarkets led decliners sliding 4.5% followed by mining giant Glencore falling 4.4% and copper miner Antofagasta shedding 2.5%.
On the Frankfurt stock exchange, decliners were led by utility company RWE sliding 2.2%, and stock exchange operator Deutsche Borse slipping 1.2%. Gainers were led by semiconductor maker Infineon Technologies up 2% and airline Deutsche Lufthansa adding 0.9%. On the Paris stock exchange, steel producer ArcelorMittal (MT) and French bank Credit Agricole led decliners, both falling 3%. The FTSE 100 closed lower 0.54%, the DAX edged up 0.08% and the CAC-40 ended down 0.67%.