A gauge of stocks across the world pared losses on Wednesday as a rally in bank shares helped buoy Wall Street, but the outlook on earnings soured after a warning on the European auto sector and a revenue miss from IBM.
Crude futures fell for the first session in four after U.S. government data showed a much larger-than-expected build in crude inventories. WTI touched its lowest price in a month.
The U.S. dollar rose as the market awaited the minutes from the latest Federal Reserve meeting. Lower-than-expected UK inflation data weighed on sterling, which gave up the previous day`s gains.
On Wall Street, IBM fell 6.2 percent, dragging blue-chips lower a day after the company missed revenue expectations. On Tuesday, the S&P 500 posted the biggest daily gain since late March.
Stocks extended losses when oil prices fell further, but a steady climb in financial sector stocks had the S&P 500 near break-even.
"It`s too early to tell if Tuesday`s rally was a `dead cat bounce` or the market setting a base," said JJ Kinahan, chief market strategist at TD Ameritrade. "We`re coming off an incredible day, so it wouldn`t be unusual to see some profit taking."
The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 29.27 points, or 0.11 percent, to 25,769.15, the S&P 500 gained 2.61 points, or 0.09 percent, to 2,812.53 and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 3.59 points, or 0.05 percent, to 7,641.90.
European stocks hit a one-week high in early trade, but then were pulled lower by a 1.9 percent fall in an index of auto stocks. Goldman Sachs said slow demand in China could hit earnings in the sector.
The pan-European STOXX 600 lost 0.40 percent and MSCI`s gauge of stocks across the globe shed 0.01 percent.
Emerging market stocks rose 0.05 percent. MSCI`s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan closed 0.27 percent higher, while Japan`s Nikkei rose 1.29 percent.CRUDE SLIDES, DOLLAR INCHES UP
U.S. crude futures tumbled below $70 a barrel after data showed U.S. stockpiles rose by 6.5 million barrels, almost triple what analysts had forecast, while exports dropped.
WTI fell 2.34 percent to $70.24 per barrel and Brent was last at $80.28, down 1.39 percent on the day.
The euro fell 0.39 percent to $1.1528 and Sterling was last trading at $1.314, down 0.33 percent on the day.
The Japanese yen weakened 0.03 percent versus the greenback at 112.31 per dollar. The dollar index rose 0.37 percent.
Minutes of the last Fed meeting, due Wednesday, should feed expectations of further tightening.
The Brazilian real rose against the dollar after data showed economic activity rose more than expected in August.
U.S. Treasury yields continued to trade range-bound after a massive run-up last week.
Benchmark 10-year notes last fell 4/32 in price to yield 3.1709 percent, from 3.156 percent late on Tuesday.
The 30-year bond last fell 6/32 in price to yield 3.3399 percent, from 3.33 percent late on Tuesday.
(This article has not been edited by Zeebiz editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)