Monday January 15th


European stocks dip into the red as Carillion collapses, Metso slips 10%

European shares fell into negative territory Monday as stocks paused for breath after two weeks of strong gains. The pan-European STOXX 600 came off its lows, down 0.13 percent, while the majority of major sectors and indexes moved into the red. Trade is expected to be lighter than usual, as markets in the U.S. are closed on Monday, in light of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. The dollar was under pressure, down by 0.5 percent, against a basket of foreign currencies. Most major indexes in Asia closed higher on Monday after Wall Street closed out last week at records and the dollar continued to struggle. The Nikkei 225 rose 0.26 percent, or 61.06 points, to close at 23,714.88, despite the yen's climb higher. Across the Korean Strait, the Kospi tacked on 0.29 percent to finish at 2,503.73. In greater China markets, Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index, which had traded convincingly higher earlier in the day, slipped into negative territory in the last hour of trade. The index edged down 0.14 percent by 3:03 p.m. HK/SIN after closing higher for the 14th consecutive day last Friday. Mainland markets traded lower. The Shanghai composite shed 0.55 percent to close at 3,409.99 and the Shenzhen composite lost 1.8 percent to end at 1,913.77. Oil prices held just below December 2014 highs on Monday, supported by ongoing output cuts led by OPEC and Russia despite a rise in U.S. and Canadian drilling activity that points to higher future output in North America. Brent crude futures, the international benchmark for oil prices, were at $69.85 per barrel at 0412 GMT, down 2 cents from their last close. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were at $64.40 a barrel, down 10 cents. Gold prices on Monday hit their highest since September, buoyed as the U.S. dollar slumped to three-year lows against a basket of currencies. Spot gold was up 0.1 percent at $1,339.46 an ounce by 0117 GMT, after earlier touching its strongest since Sept. 6 at $1,339.97. Spot gold rose for a fifth straight week last week, gaining 1.4 percent. U.S. gold futures were up 0.4 percent at $1,339.70 an ounce.