Investing.com - German automakers were some of the worst performers in European midday trade on Tuesday, as investors looked ahead to a meeting of top executives from Volkswagen , Daimler , and BMW, and senior Trump administration officials in Washington later in the day.
Daimler said Chief Executive Dieter Zetsche will attend the meeting, while BMW said Chief Financial Officer Nicolas Peter will be in attendance. Volkswagen CEO Herbert Diess is also planning to attend.
They are scheduled to meet with White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross and U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer.
The automakers, previous targets of U.S. President Donald Trump's criticism, are hoping to head off tariffs on German cars, following fresh threats from Trump to slap more tax on vehicles assembled in the European Union.
The U.S. currently imposes import tariffs on cars assembled in the EU of 2.5%, compared with 10% tariffs for U.S.-built cars entering the European trading bloc.
Volkswagen (DE:VOWG_p), Daimler (DE:DAIGn), BMW (DE:BMWG) were all off by around 2% at 6:45AM ET (11:45 GMT) in Frankfurt, while Continental (DE:CONG) and Porsche (DE:PSHG_p) were down 4.2% and 2.5% respectively.
The losses weighed on the broader European auto sector index, which fell 1.8% in midday trade. Shares in Europe's auto sector have dropped almost 25% so far this year.