The yield on two-year gilts - which is sensitive to speculation about Bank of England interest rates - fell as low as -0.161% before recovering to -0.138% at 1017 GMT, down about six basis points on the day.
“I am working at a slightly slower pace because of the virus, but I shall continue to focus on high-priority issues, such as our handling of the epidemic, or for example the Brexit dossier,” said Macron.
Britain and the European Union struck a pessimistic tone in trade talks on Thursday, with a spokesman for Prime Minister Boris Johnson saying it was “very likely” there would be no agreement unless the bloc changed its position “substantially”.
Just over two weeks before Britain finally leaves the bloc’s orbit, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen was also downbeat, saying it would be “very challenging” to overcome the “big differences” that remained.
The United Kingdom will work flat out for a Brexit trade deal and the two sides are in “tunnel” negotiations but if a deal with the European Union is not possible then the country will be prepared, interior minister Priti Patel said on Thursday.
The “tunnel” is a term for an intense final stage of secretive, make-or-break negotiations.