Shares slip, euro gains as ECB seen poised to act

By Herbert Lash
Traders are pictured at their desks in front of the DAX board at the Frankfurt stock exchange
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Traders are pictured at their desks in front of the DAX board at the Frankfurt stock exchange June 2, 2014. REUTERS/Remote/Stringer

By Herbert Lash

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Global equity markets slipped on Tuesday from record or multi-year highs, while euro zone inflation data gave the euro some respite on relief that price growth in the single currency zone did not slow as much as some had expected.

Stocks on Wall Street and across Europe fell, but emerging market stocks rose, lifted in part by Brazilian and Mexican shares. Bond yields jumped, rising to almost 2.6 percent.

MSCI's all-country world index .MIWD00000PUS of equity performance in 45 countries fell 0.04 percent, while the pan-European FTSE Eurofirst 300 .FTEU3 index of regional shares fell 0.41 percent to a provisional close of 1,374.78.

"Valuations are elevated, and therefore anything that looks soft gives the market pause," said Mark Luschini, chief investment strategist at Janney Montgomery Scott in Philadelphia.

The Dow Jones industrial average .DJI fell 21.45 points, or 0.13 percent, to 16,722.18. The S&P 500 .SPX lost 1.67 points, or 0.09 percent, to 1,923.3 and the Nasdaq Composite .IXIC dropped 7.131 points, or 0.17 percent, to 4,230.067.

Both the S&P 500 and Dow industrials closed at record highs on Monday, while MSCI's gauge of global equities ended about 1.4 percent shy from all-time highs set in late 2007.

The euro EUR= rose 0.2 percent to 1.3621 against the dollar as traders believe its recent weakness fully prices in an aggressive European Central Bank interest rate cut on Thursday.

The rate of euro zone inflation fell in May to 0.5 percent from 0.7 percent in April, increasing the risk of deflation. Economists polled by Reuters had expected inflation to remain steady.

However, with most speculators already running big bets against the euro, traders said, even the weak figure was not enough to take the euro lower.

U.S. Treasuries yields rose to their highest in three weeks as investors reset bets that yields are likely to rise after falling to 11-month lows last week.

German bund yields spiked after euro zone inflation was in-line with revised expectations, prompting some in the market who had expected an even weaker number to book profits after a recent rally.

Benchmark 10-year Treasury notes US10YT=RR were last down 8/32 in price to yield 2.5626 percent.

German 10-year yields, DE10YT=TWEB the benchmark for euro zone borrowing, rose to 1.361 percent.

Brent crude futures fell and U.S. crude rose in choppy trade as U.S. and Chinese economic data provided support to prices recently under pressure from increasing global oil production.

Brent futures for July LCOc1 settled down 1 cent at $108.82 a barrel. U.S. crude CLc1 rebounded to settle up 19 cents at $102.66 a barrel.

(Reporting by Herbert Lash; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama, Dan Grebler and Meredith Mazzilli)