Paris was down 3.00%, London 2.16%, Frankfurt 2.42% and Milan 3.38% around 10:40 GMT.

Credit Suisse shares fell 16.90%, hitting a new all-time low. Its largest shareholder, the Saudi National Bank, will "absolutely not" support the bank by increasing its capital, said its chairman Ammar al-Khudairy in an interview with Bloomberg TV on Wednesday.

The Saudi National Bank currently owns around 9.8% of Credit Suisse, just below the important threshold of 10% above which other regulations apply.

Credit Suisse has been in turmoil for several months and had to raise four billion Swiss francs at the end of 2022 via a capital increase that allowed the entry of the Saudi National Bank. But in early March, the American investment firm Harris Associates, which was one of its long-time shareholders, threw in the towel.

Elsewhere in Europe, BNP Parias fell by 7.86%, Société Générale by 8.07%, Banco Sabadell by 7.00%, ING by 6.44%, Commerzbank by 6.45%, Deutsche Bank by 6.16%, Unicredit by 5.46%.

If the measures of the US authorities and the assurances of the European governments on the soundness of the banking system following the bankruptcy of the Silicon Valley Bank (SVB) were able to stabilize the markets a little on Tuesday, the trend remains fragile.

Nobel laureate Joseph Stiglitz said the reaction was "slow" and did not rule out other failures in an interview with AFP on Wednesday.

In a sign of a flight of investors towards investments perceived as safer, government borrowing rates were falling, while they were rising sharply at the beginning of the session. The US 10-year bond fell to 3.57%, from 3.69% the day before.

Customers outside the headquarters of Silicon Valley Bank in Santa Clara, March 13, 2023 © NOAH BERGER / AFP

Bond yields have fallen sharply since late last week as the banking shock changed investors' perception of the next monetary policy choices the U.S. central bank should make. The trend is now that it remains at a slow pace of rate hikes, even if inflation remains at a high level in February, 6% according to the CPI index published on Tuesday.

In the euro zone, the central bank should "maintain its plans" with a sharp increase in its key rates on Thursday at its monetary policy meeting, according to Ms. Ozkardeskaya.

In Asia, Tokyo failed to bounce back (+0.03%), after two sessions of stalling. Shanghai (+0.55%) and Hong Kong (+1.52%) recovered, after the announcement of a recovery in retail sales in China, the main indicator of household consumption. They rebounded for the first time since September, in line with economists' expectations, highlighting the revival of activity since the lifting of anti-Covid restrictions in the country.

Oil rebounds slightly

After ending at the lowest in four months on Tuesday with the fear of a recession in the United States, oil prices were moving forward: the barrel of North Sea Brent for May delivery took 0.62% to $ 77.93, that of American WTI for April delivery 0.57% to $ 71.74 around 10:00 GMT.

Oil companies were affected by the fall in prices, more than 10% for WTI since the beginning of the week. TotalEnergies fell 3.58%, BP 32.20%, Shell 3.22%.

The dollar took advantage of its safe-haven status to rise against other currencies. The euro was down 0.53% to $1.0676 and the pound was down 0.36% to $1.2115.

Bitcoin was still up 0.33% to $24,720, a gain of more than 21% since Friday.

© 2023 AFP