Italy's leading financial index ends day with little change
Spread between Italian, German bonds at 210 basis points31 January, 20:27
Investors were also nervous about the United States Federal Reserve's decision, reinforced this week, to continue to withdraw economic stimulus.
On the Italian bond market, the spread between Italy's benchmark 10-year bond and its ultra-safe German counterpart closed at 210 basis points, with the yield on Italy's 10-year paper ending trading at 3.76% - its lowest point since May 2013.
The spread between lending rates in the two countries is an important indication of investor faith in the Italian economy.
On other European markets Spain's IBEX 35 fell by 0.44%, closing at 9,920.20 and Frankfurt's DAX slid lower by 0.71%, closing at 9,306.48 points.
In Paris, the CAC 40 slipped by 0.34%, ending trading at 4,165.72 points, while in London, the FTSE index of leading British shares fell by 0.43% on the day, closing at 6,510.44.