World stocks slightly lower ahead of US holiday

TOBY STERLING
An investor looks at the stock price monitor at a private securities company Monday, Nov. 25, 2013 in Shanghai, China. Asian stock markets rose Monday after Wall Street posted its seventh straight week of gains and a nuclear deal between world powers and Iran boosted sentiment. (AP Photo)

AMSTERDAM (AP) — World stock markets were mostly lower Tuesday after a lull in Wall Street's record-breaking run ahead of a U.S. holiday.

U.S. stocks have enjoyed seven weeks of gains, driven by the Federal Reserve's easy monetary policy, signs of gradual improvement in the economy and rising company profits. But trading activity is thinning out this week due to the Thanksgiving holiday Thursday.

IG Markets analyst David Madden said markets are also still absorbing the implications of Iran's deal with western governments on nuclear development — including a lower, more stable oil price.

"Today traders are dealing with the fallout of the agreement and locking in their profits," he said. "Airlines are continuing to soar."

By mid-session in European trading, Britain's FTSE 100 was down 0.4 percent at 6,694.85. Germany's DAX was down fractionally at 9,299.6 and France's CAC-40 was 0.2 percent lower at 4,291.08.

Wall Street was expected to open flat, with Dow and S&P 500 futures roughly unchanged.

In Asia, Japan's Nikkei 225 closed 0.7 percent lower at 15,515.24 while Hong Kong's Hang Seng was nearly unchanged at 23,681.28. China's Shanghai Composite Index lost 0.1 percent to 2,183.07. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 gained 0.1 percent to 5,357.

In energy markets, benchmark crude for January delivery recovered 46 cents to $94.55 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract had fallen 75 cents on Monday.

The euro rose slightly to $1.3547 from 1.3526 late Monday in New York. The dollar strengthened slightly to 101.44 yen from 101.40 yen.

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AP correspondent Teresa Cerojano in Manilla, Philippines contributed to this story.