在欧洲，Euro Stoxx 50指数下跌3.1%。伦敦富时100指数在矿业公司股价的带动下收跌2.4%。中国经济放缓对这类企业造成了沉重打击。
“中国人民银行在让人民币汇率走向完全灵活的过程中，需要很谨慎，”澳新银行(Australia and New Zealand Banking Group)大中华区首席经济学家刘利刚表示。“不能让市场认定人民币一定会走向贬值。如果我们那样做，就会遭遇去年下半年那种失控的局面。”
交银国际(Bank of Communications International)首席策略师洪灝预测，2016年开局不利的势头可能会继续下去。
Stocks worldwide tumbled in the first trading day of 2016, as fresh fears about a slowdown in China’s economy ignited concerns about global growth.
The sell-off started in Asia on Monday, triggered by weak manufacturing data for China and continued weakness in the country’s currency. The turmoil spread to Europe and the United States, where the escalation of Middle East tensions added to market jitters.
Global investors have been watching China warily for months, as they grow increasingly concerned about the country’s economic outlook. Last summer, a slump in the country’s once highflying market and a surprise devaluation of the Chinese renminbi set off turbulence around the world.
The same themes are carrying over into 2016. A report on Monday showed that the Chinese manufacturing sector contracted again. The Chinese renminbi looked shaky.
But there is a new twist to investors’ anxieties. Measures to help steady stocks that were put in place after last year’s market turmoil are exacerbating the sell-off in China.
“This will be the theme for the year,” said Devendra Joshi, an HSBC Asia equity strategist. “There will be more volatility.”
Few markets escaped the mess.
The Shanghai Composite Index closed down 6.9 percent on Monday. Asian stocks broadly were down, with the Nikkei 225-share index in Japan and the Hang Seng Index in Hong Kong both finishing the day about 3 percent lower.
The Standard & Poor’s 500-stock index was off 1.5 percent for the day. The Nasdaq was down 2.1 percent.
In Europe, the Euro Stoxx 50 fell 3.1 percent. In London, the FTSE 100 fell 2.4 percent, pulled down by shares of mining companies that were hit hard by China’s slowdown.
For global investors, China is a critical piece of the growth puzzle. As the second-largest economy, China drives demand around the world in commodities, consumer goods and other sectors.
The government has been trying to increase growth through stimulus measures and interest rate increases. It has tried to control the slide in the renminbi, by tapping its vast pool of foreign currency reserves. And it has moved aggressively to prop up the stock market with a series of policy actions.
But the latest economic data — and stock market tumult that followed — cast doubts on whether those efforts are working.
Despite the government’s moves, Chinese manufacturing has been steadily contracting for 10 straight months. The Caixin purchasing managers’ index for December, compiled by the market data firm Markit, fell to 48.2, well below expectations and lower than the reading in November. Any rating below 50 indicates a contraction.
Chinese demand is particular worrisome for commodity producers around the world, which have been hurt by the country’s economic slowdown. On Monday, Anglo American’s shares closed down about 7 percent, while Glencore’s were down 5.8 percent.
The pressure on the renminbi is further feeding investors’ concerns.
As the Chinese economy pulls back, the country’s companies and individuals have been looking for opportunities overseas, outflows that have weighed on the renminbi. The situation is complicated by the United States Federal Reserve’s move to raise interest rates, which makes it more attractive to keep money in dollars.
While China’s central bank has signaled it is willing to allow the currency to weaken, it must also control the slide, otherwise it risks spooking the markets. On Monday, the central bank set the renminbi at its lowest level since May 2011.
“The People’s Bank of China needs to be careful while making a fully flexible exchange rate,” said Li-Gang Liu, the chief economist for greater China at the Australia and New Zealand Banking Group. “It cannot create a one-way bet for renminbi depreciation. If they were to do that, we would run into an out-of-control scenario like we saw in the second half of last year.”
The government’s stock stabilization plan is also playing into the market sell-off.
A new rule, which went into effect on Monday, suspends trading in the major mainland markets when the CSI 300 index of blue-chip shares falls 5 percent during a session. The circuit breaker kicked in Monday, triggering a temporary halt.
Analysts indicate that the suspension might have ledinvestors to later dump shares, which then brought on a halt for the day. Since trading was halted, it could mean more losses ahead, if investors remain nervous.
Another measure, a six-month ban on major shareholders’ offloading stocks in Chinese-listed companies, expires at the end of this week. The policy was imposed to stabilize share prices last summer. But now it could be having the reverse effect, leading those with smaller holdings to sell before larger shareholders do.
Hao Hong, chief strategist at the Bank of Communications International, predicted that the tough start to 2016 could continue.
“Volatility tends to beget volatility. It will more likely than not spill over to other asset classes,” he said. “Given we had such dramatic volatility, it’s really too early to see the bottom, especially now that the fundamentals are looking so ugly.”