Statistical data showed that the eurozone’s services and manufacturing output declined to 47.3 this month from 48.6 in January. In the US, jobless claims climbed 20,000 to 362,000 in the past week—higher than the median analyst estimate of 355,000.
Moreover, the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia mentioned that its general economic index fell to -12.5. The UK’s FTSE slashed 104 points (-1.6%) to settle at 6292 whilst Germany’s DAX declined 145 points (-1.9%) to settle at 7584. France’s CAC fell 85 points (-2.3%) to settle at 3625.
In the US, the Dow Jones declined 47 points (-0.3%) to settle at 13881 whilst the S&P fell 10 points (-0.6%) to settle at 1502. The Nasdaq decreased 33 points (-1%) to settle at 3131.
In the commodity space, oil finished lower after it was reported that US crude inventories rose to a seven-month high as it increased by 4.14 million barrels to 376.4 million in the last week. Crude oil for April delivery declined $2.38 to settle at $92.84 per barrel.
Gold for April delivery was little changed as it climbed $0.60 to settle at $1,578.60 per ounce as negative data boosted the US dollar’s safe haven appeal.
In the currency space, the Japanese yen finished higher against most of its counterparts amid speculation that former BoJ Deputy Governor, Mr. Kazumasa Iwata, and ADB President, Mr. Haruhiko Kuroda, were leading the pack as the next BoJ Governor,
The euro fell against its peers amid concerns the ECB will maintain lower interest rates in order to help give the region’s economy a boost. The US dollar finished higher after St. Louis Federal Reserve Bank President, Mr. James Bullard, mentioned that if the US economy improves, the Fed might slow down its asset purchases.
There is no major local economic data slated for release today.