European Factors to Watch-Dax, FTSE set for worst week since June
By Francesco Canepa
LONDON, March 14 (Reuters) - European shares were poised to open lower on Friday, setting some national indexes on track for what could be their worst weekly loss since June as investors grew increasingly worried about the threat of war in Ukraine and jitters in the Chinese credit market.
At 0718 GMT, futures for the Euro STOXX 50, Britain's FTSE 100 , Germany's DAX and France's CAC were down between 0.5 percent and 0.9 percent.
The DAX and FTSE cash indexes were already down 3.6 percent and 2.4 percent for the week, respectively, roughly matching falls suffered in the five days to Jan 24. The expected, further declines on Friday would drag both indexes to their biggest weekly fall for nine months.
Investors have been spooked by an increase in tensions between Russia and the West over Ukraine and mixed data from China, where authorities are putting pressure on banks to reduce lending to troubled industries.
Assets which depend on economic growth, such as stocks, were under pressure while perceived safe havens, such as gold and U.S. Treasuries, rose as Russia showed no sign of backing down on plans to annex Ukraine's Crimea region despite a stronger than expected drive for sanctions from the EU and United States.
Investors were reluctant to open new long positions in stocks ahead of the weekend, when Crimean residents will vote on whether they want their region to join Russia or remain part of Ukraine.
"I'm short the whole lot (of European equity indexes)," Alex Chehade, senior dealer at spreadbetter Tradenext, said. "I'm long bonds and gold - there's a real flight to safety here." Continuación...