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International markets roundup

NEW YORK: Wall Street tumbled on Friday with more than 1,000 points knocked off the Dow in two days as investors, increasingly nervous about a potential US trade war with China, shied away from risk ahead of the weekend and sought shelter from further losses.

In a volatile session, the S&P 500 came within a hair of its 200-day moving average, a key technical level. The benchmark index also nudged closer to its February low, which marked a correction, ending 9.9 per cent lower than its Jan. 26 record.

"There is concern what the trade war could look like. Investors want to manage their risk. If it escalates rapidly, it could be a major headwind for the market," said Peter Kenny, senior market strategist at Global Markets Advisory Group, in New York.

President Donald Trump's plans for tariffs on up to $US60 billion ($US77.8 billion) in Chinese goods moved the world's two largest economies closer to a trade war as China declared plans to levy duties on up to $US3 billion of US imports including fruit and wine even as it urged the United States to "pull back from the brink."

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 424.69 points, or 1.77 per cent, to 23,533.2, the S&P 500 lost 55.43 points, or 2.10 per cent, to 2,588.26 after hitting an intraday low that was barely above its 200-day moving average of 2585.22.

The Nasdaq Composite dropped 174.01 points, or 2.43 per cent, to 6,992.67.

For the week, the Dow was down 5.67 per cent, the S&P 500 was down 5.95 per cent and the Nasdaq was down 6.54 per cent, marking their biggest weekly percentage falls since January 2016.

LONDON: British stocks fell to a 15-month low on Friday on mounting fears of a global trade war .

The FTSE 100 ended the session 0.4 per cent lower at 6,921.94 points, clawing back some losses after hitting its lowest level since December 2016 in early trading.

On the mainland, other European stocks fell, with Germany's Dax down 1.8 per cent, the French CAC 40 1.4 per cent lower and the Euro Stoxx index dropping 0.9 per cent.

Investor unease extended to the response from China, which urged the United States to "pull back from the brink", and unveiled its own plans to impose tariffs on up to $3 billion of US imports.

Bank stocks and miners were the biggest drags as risk sentiment soured and the most trade-sensitive sectors suffered.

Some felt this was a long-overdue selloff in stock markets, which enjoyed an unusually robust 2017 but have run into obstacles since the start of last month.

"It could have been anything that caused it, it just happened to be trade," said Daniel Lockyer, senior fund manager at Hawksmoor Investment Management.

TOKYO: The rumblings of a global trade war also shook Asian shares..

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan fell 4.5 per cent.

Shanghai shares were down 3.4 per cent, andJapan's Nikkei dropped 4.5 per cent.

"The economic impact on both China and the US will be determined by what form the tariffs end up taking. The effects are likely to be felt more strongly in the US and will increase both consumer and producer prices," wrote Hannah Anderson, global market strategist at J.P. Morgan Asset Management.

WELLINGTON: The S&P/NZX 50 index on Friday fell 85.46 points, or 0.99 per cent, to 8,515.36.

Austrlaian Associated PressBack to Breaking News

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