UK and European stocks closed lower as the coronavirus outbreak continued to weigh on global financial markets.
U.S. stocks fell sharply even after the Federal Reserve unveiled new measures to keep markets working properly.
The dollar dropped after the U.S. Federal Reserve took unprecedented steps to backstop a range of debt in an attempt to offset the “severe disruptions” to the economy caused by the coronavirus outbreak.
Oil prices fell as governments escalated lockdowns further curbing the global demand for oil.
Gold prices rose after the U.S. Federal Reserve mounted aggressive new steps to combat the economic impact from coronavirus outbreak, boosting investors sentiment.
In corporate news, retailer Next, budget airline easyJet and Carnival were all weaker amid concerns about the impact of coronavirus and the measures being in put in place to slow its spread.
On the upside, precious metals miner Fresnillo was the standout gainer as gold prices moved higher after the Fed ramped up monetary stimulus.
Royal Dutch Shell was also on the front foot after saying it was cutting capital expenditure, underlying operating costs and postponing the next phase of its share buyback to save $10bn in the face of the Covid-19 pandemic.