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Global shares slip ahead of central bank meetings

BANGKOK (AP) – Shares slipped in Europe yesterday after a mixed session in Asia, with markets in China still closed for Lunar New Year holidays.

United States (US) futures were also lower as investors watched for updates on monetary policy from the Bank of England and European Central Bank (ECB), mindful of the Federal Reserve’s plans to begin raising interest rates in March.

Germany’s DAX lost 0.5 per cent to 15,531.97, while the CAC 40 in Paris shed 0.4 per cent to 7,099.12. Britain’s FTSE 100 edged 0.1 per cent lower, to 7,574.69.

The future for the S&P 500 slipped one per cent, while that for the Dow Jones Industrial Average gave up 0.3 per cent.

In Asia, Tokyo’s Nikkei 225 index lost 1.1 per cent to 27,241.31 while the S&P/ASX 200 gave up 0.1 per cent to 7,078.00. Seoul’s Kospi climbed 1.7 per cent to 2,707.82, catching up on earlier gains elsewhere after markets in South Korea re-opened from holidays.

Wednesday on Wall Street, the S&P 500 rose 0.9 per cent to 4,589.38. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.6 per cent to 35,629.33 and the Nasdaq added 0.5 per cent to 14,417.55.

The indexes are on pace for solid gains this week.

Small company stocks bucked the broader market rally. The Russell 2000 index fell one per cent to 2,029.52.

Bond yields fell. The yield on the 10-year Treasury fell to 1.77 per cent from 1.80 per cent late on Tuesday.

A currency trader passing by screens at the foreign exchange dealing room of the KEB Hana Bank headquarters in Seoul. PHOTO: AP
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