“The Italian auction was weak,” said Harvinder Sian, a senior fixed-income strategist at Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc in London. “The issue is that it was a dealer-led affair and there wasn’t much real money buying. That -- allied to the political concerns -- means that sentiment toward Italian debt is poor.”
Yields on German 10-year bunds fell five basis points to 1.78%, their lowest level in six weeks.
Italy’s FTSE MIB Index dropped 1.3%. UniCredit SpA and Intesa Sanpaolo SpA, Italy’s two largest lenders, declined more than 1% to pace losses among lenders. Telecom Italia SpA retreated 2.6%.
The yen strengthened 0.7% to 98.27 per dollar.
Japanese Finance Minister Taro Aso told reporters today that reducing the corporate tax rate needs to be considered over a medium- to long-term perspective.
“The market is obviously looking at the comments by minister Aso,” said Jeremy Stretch, head of currency strategy at Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce in London, in a telephone interview. “If you are concerned about shutdown risks then it probably does provide a little avenue of opportunity just to see the yen make some gains.”
West Texas Intermediate slipped 16 cents to $102.87 a barrel, capping a third straight weekly loss. The five permanent members of the UN Security Council agreed on a resolution to find and destroy Syria’s chemical weapons. The agreement does not specify how the UN will determine whether Bashar al-Assad’s regime has complied.
Gold for immediate delivery rose 1% to $1,337.38 an ounce. Silver for immediate delivery gained 0.2% to $21.77 an ounce in London trading, paring its loss this month to 7.5%. Copper added 0.7% to $7,300 a metric ton on the London Metal Exchange.
The MSCI Emerging Markets Index slipped 0.3%, trimming the gain since June to 6.3%, its best quarterly performance in a year. Turkey’s Borsa Istanbul National 100 Index lost 1.1% for a sixth straight losses.
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