An 8% drop on China's mainland Shenzhen exchange signals the country's largest single day stock market sell-off since 2007 sparking a broad-based sell-off in London and markets around Europe. Up to now, troubles in China had hit miners, asset managers and luxury goods brands hardest. Now, the sell off is becoming an indiscriminate rout.
In Asia the Nikkei 225 in Tokyo was down 895.15 points, or 4.6%, at 18,540.68 and the Hang Seng in Hong Kong had fallen 1,112.87 points, or 5%, to 21,296.75.
Here in London, UK stocks slump around 160 points to 6,025, lows not seen since the end on 2013, while Europe's top markets are equally daubed in red ink. Healthcare stocks, previously seen as a safe haven, are hammered – notably Woodford Patient Capital Trust (WPCT), the biotech fund headed up by UK investment star Neil Woodford. Patient Capital opens 6% lower at 106p before recovering some of the losses later on. Worldwide Healthcare Trust slumps 6.6% to £17.36, one of the FTSE 350's biggest fallers.
Even monotonously reliable distribution firm Bunzl (BNZL) falls 3.6% to £17.20 after reporting half year numbers. It flags weakness in emerging markets and and some of its North American business, meaning full year earnings expectations of 90p a share now look like a stretch.
Predictably, miners and asset managers are hit again by China worries. Diamond producer Anglo American (AAL) is the worst hit of the FTSE 100, shedding 5.2% to 695p, its lowest level since the second quarter of the year 2000. Asset managers, whose earnings streams are linked to financial markets performance, are hard hit, especially those with emerging market exposure. Henderson (HGG) and Aberdeen Asset Management (ADN) are down 5.0% and 3.7%, respectively.
Elsewhere, broadcaster UTV Media (UTV) is up 10.2% to 173p as it confirms reports it is in talks to sell its TV assets - with the bidder thought to be its free-to-air peer ITV (ITV). The news is likely to prompt speculation over an ITV bid for STV (STVG).
Digital video clips platform Blinkx (BLNX:AIM) does little to lift long-run market scepticism, warning again as trading remains behind company and market hopes. 'Early second Quarter trading, however, has been below expectations. Investors anticipate big forecast cuts, and sell the shares down by a third (33%) to 17.75p.
Majestic Wine (MJW:AIM), owner of online crowd funded wine retailer Naked Wines, can't escape the market rout. The wine specialist falls 3.7% to 408.88p, despite announcing Naked's launch of an exciting 'Text for Wine' service, 'the first of its kind in the wine world'.
Testing device-maker EKF Diagnostics (EKF:AIM) falls 5.2% to 20.3p on receiving an £80 million bid for its point of care business from an undisclosed party. This is 17.7 times the £4.5 million earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) the division made in 2014.
European floor coverings distributor Headlam (HEAD) heads 5p higher to 475p on strong interims and an upbeat outlook statement. CEO Tony Brewer says positive first half momentum has continued in the first eight weeks of the second half and full-year results should be 'slightly ahead' of the board's expectations.