Friday, 25 September 2015

Wall Street joins global stocks slide; euro, bonds rise

Stocks around the world fell for a fifth day on Thursday, sliding toward two-year lows, as worries lingered over global growth and as the scandal over Volkswagen's emissions test-cheating rattled Europe's carmakers.

Government bonds prices rose on safety bids, while the dollar fell against the euro but jumped to a 13-year high against the Norwegian crown after a surprising cut in the oil producer's interest rates.

Wall Street equity indexes fell more than 1 percent in early trading, clouded by concerns about global growth and ahead of a speech later Thursday by Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen that comes a week after the U.S. central bank rattled markets by keeping in place near-zero interest rates.

The Dow Jones industrial average fell 189.32 points, or 1.16 percent, to 16,090.57, the S&P 500 was down 19.09 points, or 0.98 percent, to 1,919.67 and the Nasdaq Composite lost 51.50 points, or 1.08 percent, to 4,701.24.

Shares of Caterpillar fell as much as 8 percent to a five-year low of $64.65, knocking 31 points off the Dow Jones Industrial Average. The company slashed its revenue forecast for 2015 by $1 billion and said it could cut up to 10,000 jobs through 2018, amid a downturn in the mining and energy industries.

A 2.2 percent tumble for Tokyo's Nikkei as Japan returned from an extended break set a gloomy tone in Asia and Europe's bourses.


Shares of Volkswagen, which had been battered on news it cheated on diesel-emissions tests, clawed back 3 percent after some reassuring German and French sentiment data.

However, the scandal threatened to widen to VW's rivals, and share prices fell 4-5 percent for BMW, Renault, Fiat and Daimler.

Those declines dragged London's FTSE, Frankfurt's DAX and Paris's CAC 40 down 0.9, 2.0 and 1.9 percent respectively, to leave MSCI's 45-country All World index off 1 percent and with a fifth day of losses.

Prices for U.S. Treasuries and German Bunds were driven up by investor concerns over possibly slowing global economic growth and the stocks sell-off

Benchmark 10-year Treasuries notes rose 11/32 in price for a yield of 2.107 percent, down nearly 4 basis points from late on Wednesday. The 10-year yield touched its lowest level in four weeks at 2.102 percent.

Trading was choppy in the currency and emerging markets.

Norway's crown slumped 2 percent after its central bank unexpectedly cut interest rates.

The euro added to gains it had made on Wednesday, when European Central Bank chief Mario Draghi appeared to suggest a fresh round of money printing wasn't as close as many analysts had thought.

The euro was last up 0.75 percent at $1.1266.

Oil fell toward $47 a barrel as U.S. data, showing durable goods in August dropped 2 percent, reignited fears about the demand outlook in the world's largest oil consumer. Brent crude dropped 15 cents to $47.60 a barrel, after ending the previous session down $1.33.

Platinum which has been hammered by the VW scandal because it used in catalytic converters to clean exhaust emissions, also rebounded having hit its lowest level in more than 6-1/2 years. It last stood at $947.00 per ounce.

Emerging market currencies remained under heavy fire too.

The Brazilian real sank to a new all-time low of 4.2482 per dollar, clobbered by a recession, fiscal deficit and political instability following corruption allegations against leading politicians in the world's seventh-largest economy.

Reference: Reuters

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