The FTSE 100 is set to start Thursday on the back foot as Trump trade tensions switch from China to Europe.
CFD and spreadbetting firm IG Markets sees the London index down around 8 points, calling the price at 7,552 to 7,555 with just over an hour to go until the open.
On Wall Street, equity benchmarks were mixed. The Dow Jones finished 9 points or 0.03% lower at 29, 186. The S&P 500 edged 0.02% higher to 3,321 and the Nasdaq Composite moved up 0.14% to 9,383.
“President Trump claimed the EU has ‘no choice’ but to negotiate a new trade deal with the US,” said David Madden, analyst at CMC Markets.
It is no secret that Mr Trump is putting America first, so he could give Brussels the same treatment he dished out to China in a bid to rebalance the trading relationship.
Also, a trade spat with the EU could score him political points, which would come in handy seeing as he is up for re-election in November.
The analyst added: “Concerns about the coronavirus influenced markets too. Parallels have been drawn with the SCARS crisis in 2003, but Beijing’s handing of the situation seems to be more open this time, so the fear factor isn’t too bad.
“Should the situation get worse, stocks in the tourist trade could suffer.
In Asia, Japan’s Nikkei dropped 235 points or 0.98% to 23,795 while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng shed 627 points or 2.2% to 27,718 and the Shanghai Composite slumped farther, losing 3.4% to 2,956.
Around the markets
The pound: US$1,3121, down 0.16%
Gold: US$1,556 per ounce, up 1.25%
Brent crude: US$62.18 per barrel, down 3.8%
Bitcoin: US$8,517, down 2.42%
Significant events due on Thursday, January 23:
Trading announcements: ASOS PLC (LON:ASC), Anglo American plc (LON:AAL), Computacenter plc (LON:CCC), Countryside Properties PLC (LON:CSP), Gear4Music Holdings PLC (LON:G4M), Hyve Group PLC (LON:HYVE), PayPoint PLC (LON:PAY), Strix Group PLC (LON:KETL)
Economic announcements: ECB policy decision, US jweekly obless claims