World Markets Sink To New Lows

Hope you got plenty of rest over the weekend. It’s going to be a rough week, if this morning is any indication.

From Reuters:

MSCI’s all-country world stock index was down 1 per cent, bringing year-to-date losses to around 24 per cent.

The index, a benchmark for major investors, is only a few percentage points away from lows reached in 1995, before that decade’s Russian and Asia crises.

“The recession is very dire. You have an incredible rise in risk premium so people expect the worst. Banking results are getting worse,” said Giorgio Radaelli, chief strategist at wealth manager BSI in Switzerland.

Investors remain particularly concerned about the banking sector, with uncertainty about the potential nationalization of U.S. banks weighing hard.

European shares fell, with the pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 index of top shares down 2.2 per cent. The broader STOXX 600  was also down 2 per cent, hitting its lowest level since September 1996.

Earlier, Japan’s Nikkei average¬† fell 1.2 per cent to a 26-year closing low. The broader Topix) slipped 1.5 per cent to a fresh 25-year low.

Export giant Japan’s current account balance swung to its largest deficit on record in January, with the income surplus tumbling about a third from a year earlier.

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