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AAP

2012-11-08

A roundup of trading on major world markets:

NEW YORK - US stock markets have tumbled after President Barack Obama's re-election victory set up a tough battle with Republicans over a looming "fiscal cliff".

In the first six minutes of trade on Wednesday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 197.98 points (1.49 per cent) to 13,047.70.

The broad-based S&P 500 fell 21.28 (1.49 per cent) to 1,407.11, while the Nasdaq Composite shed 41.87 (1.39 per cent) at 2,970.06.

Obama won a resounding victory over Republican challenger Mitt Romney in a closely fought race late Tuesday.

But voters left Congress divided, with Democrats maintaining the Senate and Republicans holding the House of Representatives.

LONDON - European stock markets closed lower and the euro fell against the US dollar.

Traders on Wednesday were worried about a looming fiscal crisis in the US and gloomy growth forecasts from Europe.

After rising in early exchanges as investors welcomed an end to the US political drama, equities and the European single currency headed south as attention switched to the challenging months ahead.

At the close of trading, London's FTSE 100 index of top companies had lost 1.58 per cent to 5791.63 points, Frankfurt's DAX 30 retreated 1.96 per cent to 7232.83 points and in Paris the CAC 40 shed 1.99 per cent to 3409.59.

Madrid's IBEX index lost 2.26 per cent to 7660.70 points as Spain's growth prospects grew darker.

The euro fell to $1.2763 in late London deals, compared with $1.2814 late in New York on Tuesday.

HONG KONG - The dollar slipped in Asian trade while share markets were muted after President Barack Obama's re-election.

On equity markets, Sydney gained 0.71 per cent, or 31.7 points, to end at 4,516.5. Tokyo was flat, nudging down 2.26 points to 8,972.89, while Seoul closed up 0.49 per cent, or 9.38 points, at 1,937.55.

Hong Kong shares ended up 0.71 per cent, or 155.42 points, at 22,099.85 and Shanghai was flat, edging down 0.27 points to 2,105.73.

WELLINGTON - The NZX 50 Index rose 15.42 points, or 0.4 per cent, to 3943.09.