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Dollar inches higher; European shares fall.

News Date: 30/12/2015 09:38:00

 U.S. dollar index scored gains for the second session, up 0.21% to 98.43. Dollar edged up 0.11% against the yen to 120.59, limping away from a two-month low at 120.05, and recording its third consecutive day of gains. It was largely flat against the euro and sterling, inching up to 1.0926 against the first and 1.4810 against the second.


Oil prices plunged, after the International Monetary Fund (IMF) voiced its concerns about weakening global growth in 2016, which would lead to even lower demand for oil in a time of excessive supply. Brent futures lost 76 cents, or 2.01% to $37.03 a barrel; near an 11-year low at $35.98.  U.S. West Texas Intermediary (WTI) crude futures dived 93 cents, or 2.44% to $36.95 a barrel.


European shares lost steam on the heels of the oil decline, with the pan-European index FTSEurofirst down half a percent to 1,445, after hitting a three-week high yesterday. Germany's DAX gave up 120 points, or 1.11% to 10,739, vastly underperforming the broader market. France's CAC 40 index tumbled a smaller 16 points, or 0.33% to 4,686. Britain's FTSE dipped 36 points, or 0.60% to 6,277.


Natural gas futures lost a heavy 5.0% as forecasters expect cold weather in the U.S. to fade away soon, dampening demand on heating energy. Minerals were on the back foot as well, with Gold futures losing 0.63% to $1,061 an ounce. Silver slid a similar 0.60% to $13.83, edging farther away from the $14 mark. Copper performed better, trading flat with no losses at $2.135 a pound.


Wall Street opened lower in tandem with its European counterparts, with Dow Jones down 12 points, or 0.07% at 17,708. NASDAQ lost 6 points, or 0.13% to 5,100. S&P 500 slipped 4 points, or 0.17% to 2,074.    


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