European Factors to Watch-Equity futures drop on new concerns over China
(Adds future prices, company news items)
LONDON Jan 7 (Reuters) - European equity futures fell sharply on Thursday after China accelerated the depreciation of the yuan, sending currencies across the region reeling and domestic stock markets tumbling.
Futures on the Euro STOXX 50, German DAX and French CAC indexes fell between 2.8-3.2 percent. Futures on Britain's FTSE 100 fell 2 percent.
The People's Bank of China (PBOC) again surprised markets by setting the official midpoint rate on the yuan, also known as the renminbi (RMB), at 6.5646 per dollar, the lowest since March 2011.
China's stock markets were suspended for the rest of the day less than half an hour after opening as a new circuit-breaking mechanism was tripped for the second time this week.
Investors have expressed fears that Beijing, in a bid to help exporters, is allowing the yuan's rapid depreciation to accelerate, which would mean China's economy is even weaker than had been imagined. This could therefore spark another wave of competitive devaluations around Asia and in other key economies.
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