European markets benefited from a rebound of 1% of Chinese stocks, which resumed business after a week-long holiday in the Lunar New Year.
The pan-European STOXX 600 index rebounded after reaching its lowest level in a week, thanks to the conclusion of certain transactions and equity gains in the mining and banking sectors.
Investors worried about slowing global growth, the trade dispute between the United States and China and US policy. Safe haven bonds and the dollar rose in a climate of prolonged uncertainty.
Nevertheless, equities had a good year, with the MSCI World Index across all countries up almost 10% since the beginning of the year. The index was nearly 0.2% higher on Monday.
The dollar reached its highest level in six weeks against a basket of currencies, recording an eighth consecutive day of hike as investors crowded into the world's most liquid currency.
The resumption of trade negotiations between the United States and China, as well as Brexit, seemed to be the focus of the week's concerns for investors.
"There will be important events this week related to two of the world's major uncertainties: the high-level trade talks between the United States and China in Beijing and the negotiations between the United Kingdom and the European Union in Brussels But neither of the two seems likely to produce a breakthrough, prolonging uncertainty, "Societe Generale told customers in a note.
China took an optimistic note when talks resumed, but it also expressed anger over a controversial US Navy mission in the South China Sea, darkening the prospect of improved relations between Beijing and Washington. .
Both parties are trying to reach an agreement before March 1, when US tariffs on Chinese imports worth $ 200 billion ($ 282 billion) should go from 10% to 25%.
In fixed income, fears of an economic slowdown in Europe and declining inflationary expectations dominated Monday morning trading. The yield on 10-year German government bonds remained close to 0.10%.
Last week, the European Commission downgraded its growth forecasts for the euro area for this year. Adding to concerns, the failure of talks between lawmakers of the US and Republican Democrats over the weekend has raised fears of a new closure of the government.
"Trade talks and closures (concerns) really weigh on the markets," said Sebastian Fellechner, exchange rate strategist at DZ Bank. "We do not see any major movement because of general and global uncertainty."
The yield on the 10-year German Bund, considered the risk-free benchmark for the region, fell Friday to 0.77%, its lowest level since October 2016, reflecting the bond market's concern facing the economic situation.
The growing threat to growth means that equity markets will depend in part on the earnings of major US companies to gain clues to the health of consumer stocks. These include Coca-Cola, PepsiCo Inc., Walmart Inc., Home Depot Inc., Macy's Inc. and Gap Inc.
Analysts now expect S & P 500 corporate profits in the first quarter to fall 0.1% from a year earlier. According to Refinitiv's IBES data, this would be the first quarterly decline in this type of profit since 2016.
In Asia, China's safe haven index jumped 1.6%. The Shanghai Composite SSE climbed 1.2%.
Australian equities recovered losses to finish down 0.2%. The KOSPI index of South Korea rose 0.2%. The Indonesian and Indian landmarks were in the red.
The widest MSCI index in the Asia-Pacific equities market outside Japan rose slightly, after falling from its four-month high on Friday. Transaction volumes were generally small, with Japan being a holiday.
Elsewhere, the euro was barely changed to $ 1,132 ($ A1,5971) after five consecutive days of losses, bringing it back to its lowest level in two weeks. The pound fell to 1.2895 USD (A1.8190 USD) after the release of British GDP data for the fourth quarter.
The UK economy has slowed as expected over the last three months of last year, which has brought growth to its lowest level in six years in 2018, Brexit's worrying investments .
British Prime Minister Theresa May rejected the idea of a customs union with the European Union, putting an end to hopes that her Brexit policy will be won to defeat opposition Labor.
May promise lawmakers a second opportunity to influence Brexit talks later in the month to prevent any rebellion within his own party by those who fear Britain will end up leaving without a deal.
The Australian dollar rose slightly against the one-month lows on Friday, although sentiment remained cautious after the country's central bank opened the door to a possible rate cut.
Oil prices retreated amid concern over slowing global demand and the resumption of drilling activity in the United States.
US crude fell 0.6% to US $ 52.42 (US $ 73.95) a barrel. The Brent was flat US $ 62.12 (A87.63).