Global markets: equities markets limp to finish line after volatile week
By Trevor Hunnicutt NEW YORK (Reuters) - Global investors gravitated toward safe-haven assets on Friday as worries about the world economy persisted, cutting short a two-day rebound in Wall Street stocks.
By Trevor Hunnicutt
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Global investors gravitated toward safe-haven assets on Friday as worries about the world economy persisted, cutting short a two-day rebound in Wall Street stocks.
U.S. stock indexes seesawed, making it difficult to end one of the most brutal December selloffs in memory on a high note.
"Markets will likely remain treacherous in the New Year," Marc Chandler, chief market strategist at Bannockburn Global Forex LLC, told clients.
After flirting with strong gains in the afternoon, the Dow Jones Industrial Average <.DJI> ended down 76.42 points, or 0.33 percent, to 23,062.4, the S&P 500 <.SPX> lost 3.09 points, or 0.12 percent, to 2,485.74 and the Nasdaq Composite <.IXIC> added 5.03 points, or 0.08 percent, to end at 6,584.52. [.N]
MSCI's index of global equities <.MIWD00000PUS> gained 0.57 percent to bring the global benchmark to a weekly advance near 2 percent.
Markets swung wildly in a week shortened by the Christmas holiday, starting with Wall Street's worst-ever Christmas Eve drop, pushing the S&P 500 to within a whisker of bear market territory.
But efforts at a late Santa Claus rally failed to salve investors after a year that brought gains for very few categories of financial assets, from stocks to bonds and commodities. The global MSCI index, the S&P 500, the Dow and the Nasdaq are each headed for their worst years since the 2008 financial crisis.
GRAPHIC-Global markets in 2018: https://tmsnrt.rs/2R8CUd7
The dollar index <.DXY> dipped 0.14 percent, with the euro
That has boosted gold, a traditional safe haven whose appeal this year was hit by a stronger dollar, which makes the yellow metal more expensive to buyers with other currencies. Gold
The steady drumbeat of disappointing economic data reinforced caution, including Japan's slowing industrial output and retail sales, declining German inflation and U.S. data for November showing contracts to buy previously owned homes fell unexpectedly in the latest sign of housing market weakness.
Breaking with the bad news, the Chicago Purchasing Management Index came in ahead of consensus.
Chris Bailey, a strategist at brokerage Raymond James Financial Inc, said dollar weakness was good news for non-U.S. assets.
"If we get the transmission mechanism of a lower dollar, stocks outside the U.S. are set up for a good 2019," Bailey said. "Once people get their heads around the fact the U.S. is not going to have yet another double-digit return year in 2019, you can look elsewhere."
That would be a relief to world markets that largely underperformed the United States in 2018.
Bonds have also been helped in recent weeks by risk aversion. U.S. benchmark 10-year Treasury notes
Oil prices lifted a bit off two-year lows after a near 40 percent decline this quarter with U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude
The Energy Information Administration reported U.S. crude stocks
(Additional reporting by Julien Ponthus, Sujata Rao, Saikat Chatterjee and Helen Reid in London; editing by Dan Grebler and G Crosse)
This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.
Find latest and upcoming tech gadgets online on Tech2 Gadgets. Get technology news, gadgets reviews & ratings. Popular gadgets including laptop, tablet and mobile specifications, features, prices, comparison.
By Uday Sampath Kumar (Reuters) - Target Corp reported a 17.2% rise in comparable sales for the holiday season on Wednesday as its online sales more than doubled, thanks to faster deliveries and higher demand for home goods, electronics and beauty products.
By Medha Singh and Devik Jain (Reuters) - The S&P 500 and the Nasdaq rose in choppy trading on Wednesday as Intel shares jumped thanks to a change in management while broader sentiment was muted after a recent run to record highs. Intel said it would replace Chief Executive Officer Bob Swan with VMware Inc CEO Pat Gelsinger next month
By Danny Ramos LA PAZ (Reuters) - The Bolivian government said on Wednesday it had signed a contract with India's Serum Institute for the supply of 5 million doses of AstraZeneca's COVID-19 vaccine. President Luis Arce said that combined with a recent deal to buy 5.2 million Sputnik V vaccine doses from Russia, Bolivia now expected to be able to inoculate all of its vaccinable population. Both vaccines require two doses to be given, meaning they would be used to inoculate a total of 5.1 million people from Bolivia's 11.51 million-strong population.