World stocks slip from six-year high

Tuesday, 8 April 2014 00:05 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

REUTERS: World stocks slipped from last week’s six-year high on Monday on concerns about technology shares, while speculation the European Central Bank (ECB) will ease policy further pushed down European bond yields. The Nasdaq suffered its biggest decline since February on Friday as high-flying and high-growth shares mostly in the tech and biotech sectors extended their recent sell-off, with sentiment spilling into Asia. The pull-back came after the Dow and S&P 500 indexes hit record highs after March; US jobs data soothed concerns about the health of the economic recovery there, but eased fears of an early interest rate hike. “This could be the start of a ‘profit taking’ consolidation period. People should buy only when the pull-back is done, while it could also be time to hedge the portfolios,” said Gerard Sagnier, analyst at brokerage Aurel BGC in Paris. The MSCI world equity index fell a third of a percent, having hit levels not seen since late 2007 on Friday. The Nikkei fell 1.6%, led lower by index heavyweight Softbank which fell over 4% in brisk turnover. European stocks were down around 1% while emerging stocks outperformed with a decline of just 0.15% following three straight weeks of gains. The dollar was steady against a basket of six major currencies, while the euro was under pressure from expectations the ECB may undertake a programme of asset purchases this year to support the economy.