Asian stocks closed mixed, with Chinese shares higher after preliminary PMI figures were positive. European shares opened lower, with more signs of a slowdown in the eurozone appearing.
Here are five things that matter for markets now:
- Growth in eurozone manufacturing and services was the slowest this year in September, PMI data from Markit shows. Composite PMI fell to 52.3 from August's 52.5 and compared with expectations of 52.5 in a Bloomberg survey of economists.
- Chinese factory activity edged up in September, HSBC flash PMI data showed. The index rose to 50.5 from August's final reading of 50.2. It also exceeded the expectations of economists in a Reuters survey, who had expected it to fall right to the 50 mark between expansion and contraction.
- The U.S. and its Arab allies launched the first air strikes on militants from Islamic State in Syria. A U.S official who did not want to be identified said among the allies involved were Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Jordan and Bahrain.
- Google (GOOGL) must improve its offer for a settlement with the European Commission in an investigation over whether it breaches competition in the EU with its search engine or face formal charges, European competition commissioner Joaquin Almunia said according to the Wall Street Journal.
- U.K. bank Barclays (BCS) could be fined as much as £38 million ($62.2 million) by the U.K.'s Financial Conduct Authority for failing to separate its customers' money from its own, the FT reports. The paper said the fine is a record one for this type of misconduct and it is the second incurred by Barclays.