International markets roundup
Market watch top headlines
A roundup of trading on major world markets:
NEW YORK - US stocks were back in retreat mode on Wednesday, as markets resist a push higher to their all-time highs.
Six minutes into trade, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was 61.89 points (0.44 per cent) lower at 13,917.41.
The S&P 500 index dropped 5.91 (0.39 per cent) to 1505.38, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite dropped 10.6 points (0.33) to 3160.98
Wednesday's trading showed the market continues to trade erratically. Recent trading has seen large double or triple-digit moves alternate in the Dow Jones index since the index breached 14,000 last Friday.
LONDON - Most major European stock markets have fallen but London has eked out a gain as shares in the Royal Bank of Scotland rose despite the bank facing big fines over the Libor rate-rigging scandal.
London's FTSE 100 index of top companies bounced back into the black in late trades to close with a slight gain of 0.20 per cent to 6295.34 points.
Frankfurt's DAX dropped 1.09 per cent to 7581.18 points however, and in Paris the CAC shed 1.40 per cent to 3642.90.
Madrid's IBEX 35 slipped 0.46 per cent lower in value and Milan's FTSEMIB index lost 0.66 per cent.
In foreign exchange deals, the European single currency slid to $1.3526 from $1.3582 late on Tuesday in New York.
HONG KONG - Most Asian markets have closed higher following big losses in the previous session, with Tokyo surging as the yen tumbled after Bank of Japan (BoJ) governor Masaaki Shirakawa said he would step down early.
Traders also took a lead from Wall Street and Europe, where encouraging economic data offset concerns over political uncertainty in Spain and Italy.
Tokyo soared 3.37 per cent, or 416.83 points, to 11,463.75 - its highest close since September 2008 after the collapse of US bank Lehman Brothers at the height of the global financial crisis.
Sydney climbed 0.78 per cent, or 38.3 points, to 4,921.0 and Hong Kong added 0.47 per cent, or 108.40 points, to 23,256.93, while Shanghai ended flat, edging up 1.35 points to 2,434.48. But Seoul lost 1.99 points to close at 1,936.19.
WELLINGTON - Wellington was closed for a public holiday.