© Reuters. Frankfurt Stock Exchange© Reuters. Frankfurt Stock Exchange

Investing.com – European markets opened lower on Tuesday, as tensions in Iran weighed on market sentiment and investors remained cautious for their first trading day of 2018.

The dropped 0.47%, France’s declined 0.52%, while Germany’s was down 0.81% by 03:35 a.m. ET (07:35 GMT).

Markets were jittery after Iranian protesters late Monday, marking the biggest challenge to the country’s clerical leadership since 2009.

Elsewhere, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un surprised world observers by saying he wished for a with Seoul in his annual New Year’s Day address.

Financial stocks were broadly higher, as French lenders BNP Paribas (PA:) and Societe Generale (PA:) gained 0.55% and 0.57%, while Germany’s Commerzbank (DE:) and Deutsche Bank (DE:) advanced 0.44% and 1.10%.

Among peripheral lenders, Italy’s Intesa Sanpaolo (MI:) and Unicredit (MI:) climbed 0.29% and 1.48% respectively, while Spanish banks BBVA (MC:) and Banco Santander (MC:) jumped 0.66% and 1.06%.

Allianz (DE:) added to gains, with shares up 0.22% after the inurer on Friday announced the acquisition of a 49% stake in Liverpool Victoria Friendly Society’s UK general insurance businesses, the first stage in the creation of the companies’ joint venture and strategic partnership.

In London, rose 0.26%, as UK lenders tracked their European counterparts higher.

Shares in the Royal Bank of Scotland (LON:) and Barclays (LON:) climbed 0.50% and 0.69% respectively, while HSBC Holdings (LON:) gained 0.70% and Lloyds Banking (LON:) surged 2.31%.

Centrica (LON:) was also on the upside, with shares amid reports the energy supplier is seeking a second joint venture partner to continue to boost its oil and gas production business after a recent deal with Germany’s Bayerngas Norge.

In the mining sector, stocks were broadly lower. Shares in Fresnillo (LON:) slipped and Anglo American (LON:) dropped 0.47%, while BHP Billiton (LON:) and Rio Tinto (LON:) tumbled 1.50% and 1.94% respectively.

In the U.S., equity markets pointed to a mixed open. The pointed to a 0.14% increase, signaled a 0.11% rise, while the indicated a 0.07% dip.

Disclaimer: Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. All CFDs (stocks, indexes, futures) and Forex prices are not provided by exchanges but rather by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual market price, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Therefore Fusion Media doesn`t bear any responsibility for any trading losses you might incur as a result of using this data.

Fusion Media or anyone involved with Fusion Media will not accept any liability for loss or damage as a result of reliance on the information including data, quotes, charts and buy/sell signals contained within this website. Please be fully informed regarding the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, it is one of the riskiest investment forms possible.