(Bloomberg) -- European stocks fell alongside U.S. equity-index futures in the countdown to major central bank meetings and a deadline for fresh American tariffs on Chinese goods. Treasuries edged higher and the dollar was steady.
The Stoxx Europe 600 Index declined for a second day as all 19 sectors traded in the red. Contracts for the main U.S. gauges also dropped, with investors turning more cautious as they await news on whether Washington will go ahead with a planned Dec. 15 tariff hike on imports from China. European bonds also edged down.
The picture was more mixed in Asia, where a regional benchmark declined overall in below average volumes but shares in South Korea and China bucked the broader retreat. Japan's 10-year bond yield briefly touched zero for the first time since March.
Investors appear to be pulling back before a slew of significant events in the next few days, from Federal Reserve and European Central Bank policy meetings to a general election in Britain. The biggest focus arguably remains on whether the U.S. and China can avert a new round of protectionist duties.
"The idea that we have a relatively calmer period of time in the U.S.-China trade tensions is obviously very important," Ben Powell, BlackRock Investment Institute's chief Asia-Pacific strategist, said. However, "this is just a temporary period of relative calm," he said. "The tensions between the U.S. and China are structural and persistent."
Elsewhere, the Mexican peso strengthened on growing optimism that approval is close for USMCA, the trilateral trade accord to replace Nafta. Oil slipped.
Here are some key events to watch this week:
These are some of the main moves in markets:
--With assistance from David Wilson.
To contact the reporters on this story: Andreea Papuc in Sydney at email@example.com;Todd White in Madrid at firstname.lastname@example.org
To contact the editor responsible for this story: Sam Potter at email@example.com
For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com
©2019 Bloomberg L.P.