Morning in brief: S&P warns of mass downgrade, Chinese stocks drop on property fears

Standard & Poor’s (S&P) says 15 European countries are at risk of downgrade, while the eurozone debt crisis forces the price of cocoa to three-year lows.

Markets

Chinese stocks fall to their lowest point in six weeks over concerns that the country’s property market faces a price correction in the months ahead, according to Bloomberg.

Slowing demand caused by the eurozone debt crisis combines with a bumper harvest in west Africa to push the price of cocoa to its lowest level in three years, the Financial Times reports.

Companies

BP accuses oil fields services firm Halliburton of “intentionally” destroying evidence linked to the Gulf of Mexico oil well blast that killed 11 people last year, the BBC says. Halliburton denies the allegations.

International

Ratings agency Standard & Poor’s warns 15 members of the European Union that they could be downgraded if the eurozone debt crisis is not resolved, according to Reuters.

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