In Europe the FTSE was a notable exception, adding 62 points (+1.2%) to settle at 5490, whilst the CAC (-0.4%) and DAX (+0.2%) didn’t fare so well.
Stateside, the Dow Jones shed 66 points (-0.6%) to settle at 11955, whilst the broader S&P (-0.9%) and tech-heavy Nasdaq (-1.3%) endured heavier losses.
US stocks gave back early gains after the US Federal Reserve confirmed that the economy has been expanding but that there remains significant downside risks to global growth.
The euro slumped overnight, tumbling to an 11-month low against the greenback on concern European leaders remain a long way from agreement on ways to expand the region’s rescue capacities.
Oil recorded its biggest one-day gain in almost a month, rising US$2.37 to US$100.14 a barrel amid worries about supply disruptions in Iran.
Gold fell to a fresh seven-week low, shedding 2% to US$1,635 an ounce.
Base metals fell between 0.1-1.5% as the stronger US dollar and eurozone fears dominated trading activity.
In company news, gas pipeline operator, APA Group, has made a $1.06 billion offer for Hastings Diversified.
Today’s session will bring us data in the form of the Westpac Consumer sentiment reading, at 10:30am, AEDT.