World stocks down on China hike fears, Europe woes

The Pak Banker - - International3 -

BANGKOK: World mar­kets were lower Tues­day as Chi­nese shares slid on fears of an in­ter­est rate hike and the Euro­pean Union's bailout of Ire­land failed to con­vince in­vestors the con­ti­nent's debt cri­sis has been con­tained.

Oil prices hov­ered be­low $86 a bar­rel in Asia as traders looked to U.S. sup­ply re­ports for clues about the strength of de­mand for crude. In cur­ren­cies, the dol­lar was down against the yen and higher ver­sus the euro.

Euro­pean mar­kets largely fell in early trad­ing. Bri­tain's FTSE 100 was up 0.1 per­cent to 5,555.22. Ger­many's DAX was down 0.1 per­cent at 6,694.30 and France's CAC-40 slipped 0.3 per­cent to 3,624.61. Wall Street was set to open lower, with Dow fu­tures down 0.3 per­cent to 11,007. Chi­nese shares trimmed some losses af­ter volatile trad­ing that took the Shang­hai bench­mark down 3.4 per­cent in the morn­ing on wor­ries over fresh in­fla­tion-fight­ing mea­sures. The Shang­hai Com­pos­ite In­dex closed down 1.6 per­cent to 2,820.18. The Shen­zhen Com­pos­ite In­dex for China's smaller, sec­ond ex­change fell 2.4 per­cent to 1,307.83. Soar­ing prices in China, the world's No. 2 econ­omy, are so far limited mostly to food, but an­a­lysts say price pres­sure could spread to other ar­eas un­less Bei­jing hikes in­ter­est rates and fur­ther tight­ens credit. In­vestors worry that might slow eco­nomic growth or re­duce the amount of money flow­ing through the econ­omy that is help­ing to fi­nance stock trad­ing. "There is a lit­tle ner­vous­ness about how hard the pol­i­cy­mak­ers will have to slam on the brakes to con­tain in­fla­tion," said David Co­hen, an econ­o­mist with Ac­tion Eco­nom­ics in Singapore. -Ap

MADRID: Bri­tish Air­way's Chief Ex­ec­u­tive Wille Walsh, cen­tre left and Ibe­ria's Chair­man An­to­nio Vazquez, cen­tre right, shake hands flanked by cabin crew from the two air­lines be­fore a joint Bri­tish Air­ways and Ibe­ria news con­fer­ence in Madrid on Tues­day. The two air­lines re­vealed in London and Madrid that more than 99 per­cent of in­vestors had voted in favour of merger. -Afp

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