LONDON – Stocks around Europe are dipping on Friday as the world reacts to news overnight that the United States launched a series of airstrikes on a Syrian airfield in the first significant military intervention of the Trump presidency.
More than 50 Tomahawk missiles were launched from warships stationed in the Mediterranean at Shayrat airfield and nearby military infrastructure controlled by Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. The strikes came in response to a chemical attack that killed at least 80 people in the northwestern part of the country on Monday.
News of the strikes sent US bond yields and stock market futures lower,
and equities in Europe followed suit at the open. By 8.20 a.m. BST (3.15 a.m. ET) all of the continent’s major bourses are in negative territory, although losses have so far been reasonably limited.
Britain’s FTSE 100 is one of the smallest fallers, losing just 0.04% so far on the day, with no clear stimulus other than the airstrikes moving the index. The biggest gainers on the index include gold miner Randgold Resources, and aerospace engineering, defence, and security firm BAE Systems, which have gained 2% and 1.7% respectively. Fallers are largely companies focused on oil and industrial commodity production.
The chart below shows the FTSE’s moves so far on Friday:
And here is the scoreboard for the rest of the continent:
Elsewhere in the markets, safe-haven assets including gold and silver have jumped since the strikes, with both precious metals up by more than 1%.
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