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Global Shares Decline on Concerns Over U.S. Tax Plan

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11/10/2017 | 06:58am CET
By Marina Force and Kenan Machado 

European stocks edged down Friday, following Asian markets and Wall Street lower on concerns over the U.S. tax-overhaul plan.

The Stoxx Europe 600 was down 0.1% shortly after European markets opened.

Futures pointed to a 0.2% opening loss for the S&P 500. Wall Street closed in the red Thursday after Senate Republicans released a tax-reform proposal that delays cutting corporate rates until 2019.

The Senate plan to overhaul the U.S. tax code differs significantly from the House GOP's in key areas such as the level of top individual tax rates and the timing of a corporate tax-rate cut. Differences among the two proposals caused some traders to question the ability of Republicans to get a bill through to the White House.

"Investors are slowly unwinding their expectations from the Trump tax bill," said Margaret Yang, market analyst at CMC Markets. Given the significant run-up in global shares in the past few weeks, traders took cues to take profit, she said.

In the bond market, yields on 10-year Treasurys rose to 2.376% from 2.333% Thursday, according to Tradeweb. German bund yields also edged up to 0.393% from 0.379%. Yields move inversely to prices.

In Asia, the Nikkei Stock Average led regional declines with a 0.8% fall, paring sharper declines, with the increased volatility likely a reflection of market caution following the strong gains over the past two months.

Tech stocks were among the biggest decliners, with Renesas Electronics down 0.8% and Rohm down 1.2%, after opening down around 2.5% each.

Selling in Asian chip maker stocks began Thursday when technology giant Qualcomm signed significant but preliminary deals with three Chinese companies to supply components. The tie-ups fueled fears that other companies in the region that rely on the U.S. firm's patents to develop and make chips would be at a disadvantage.

Other tech-heavy markets also succumbed to selling, with Korea's Kospi down 0.3%, while in Hong Kong the Hang Seng Index pared early losses and was up 0.1%.

Australia's S&P/ASX 200 was down 0.3% after the benchmark reached its best levels since 2008 this week.

In the commodities market, Brent crude was down 0.2% to $63.81.

Write to Kenan Machado at [email protected]

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