International markets roundup
Market watch top headlines
A roundup of trading on major world markets:
NEW YORK - US stocks slid for a fourth straight day, as the European Central Bank (ECB) took no action to address the eurozone sovereign debt crisis but suggested it may intervene on the markets to lower borrowing costs.
Both the ECB and the Bank of England (BoE) maintained current monetary policies at meetings on Thursday, a day after the US Federal Reserve also held the status quo, disappointing investors hoping for new economic stimulus.
The major indices started the day with sharp opening losses and showed few signs of recovery as the day progressed.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 92.18 points (0.71 per cent) at 12,878.88 points at the close.
The S&P 500, a broad measure of the markets, dropped 10.14 points (0.74 per cent) to 1,365.00.
The Nasdaq lost 10.44 points (0.36 per cent) to close at 2,909.77.
LONDON - Disappointed stock markets in Europe fell sharply after European Central Bank (ECB) chief Mario Draghi announced no immediate monetary measures to ease debt pressures in the eurozone.
London's benchmark FTSE 100 index of top companies held up better than most, losing only 0.88 per cent to 5,662.30 points.
But Frankfurt's DAX 30 slumped 2.20 per cent at 6,606.09 points and Paris's CAC 40 lost 2.68 per cent at 3,232.46 points.
Madrid was the worst affected, dropping 5.16 per cent after it had been especially hoped there would be some ECB measure to help Spain cut its borrowing costs, while Milan tumbled 4.64 per cent.
The euro fell to $US1.2150.
HONG KONG - Asian markets closed mixed in tentative trade ahead of a meeting of the European Central Bank (ECB).
Tokyo closed 0.13 per cent higher on Thursday, adding 11.33 points to 8,653.18 and Sydney added 0.16 per cent, or 6.7 points, to 4,269.5.
Hong Kong shed 0.66 per cent, or 130.18 points, to 19,690.20 and Shanghai fell 0.57 per cent, or 12.18 points, to 2.111.18 while Seoul closed 0.56 per cent, or 10.53 points, lower at 1,869.40.
WELLINGTON - The NZX 50 index rose 33.46 points, or 0.9 per cent, to 3,564.11.