Europe’s main stock markets fell at the start of trading on Monday, with Milan’s FTSE Mib index slumping 2.31 percent to 15,336 points after Italian Prime Minister Mario Monti announced his intention to resign.

Elsewhere, London’s benchmark FTSE 100 index retreated 0.16 percent to 5,905.00 points, Frankfurt’s DAX 30 index dropped 0.44 percent to 7,484.95 points and in Paris the CAC 40 slid 0.46 percent to 3,586.99.

In a dramatic weekend of tense political drama, Mario Monti announced his resignation and Silvio Berlusconi launched a comeback bid.

The developments have put the Monti government’s reform agenda on hold and brought forward the election, with a vote now expected as early as February — well before the government’s mandate runs out at the end of April.

The main FTSE Mib index in Milan fell 2.31 percent in the first ten minutes of trading to 15,336 points, AFP reports.

In earlier deals, Asian equities mostly rose on Monday as dealers cheered an improvement in the US unemployment rate and another batch of manufacturing figures indicating China’s economy is emerging from a slumber.

French industrial output slid 0.7 percent in October from September, when it had plunged by 2.7 percent on a monthly basis, the national statistics agency INSEE said Monday.

In the manufacturing sector the decline was greater at 0.9 percent in October, after a 3.4 percent fall in September.

Industrial production was nearly stable on a three-month running basis, however.

Output in August to October dipped by only 0.1 percent from the May to July period, said INSEE.

Manufacturing showed a 0.1 percent gain for that period.

Greece announced it had extended until tomorrow a debt buyback offer, the success of which is key for it to receive bailout funding from the EU and IMF without which it could soon go bankrupt.

“The Hellenic Republic [the Republic] announced today that it has decided to extend the period for submission of additional participation instructions’’ to participate in the bond buyback “until 12:00 p.m. (London time) on Tuesday, 11 December 2012.”

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Shayne Heffernan Ph.D.
Economist/Hedge Fund Manager

Shayne Heffernan oversees the management of funds for institutions and high net worth individuals. He is also an active consultant working with Corporations around the World.

He is recognized as one of the leading Economists in South East Asia, as well as the preeminent authority on ASEAN. His opinions and forecasts are widely read by decision makers in the region and Internationally.

Shayne Heffernan holds a Ph.D. in Economics and brings with him over 25 years of trading experience in Asia and hands on experience in Venture Capital, he has been involved in several start ups that have seen market capitalization over $500m and 1 that reached a peak of $15b. He has managed and overseen start ups in Mining, Shipping, Technology and Financial Services.


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