Around the World's Markets

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The Independent Online
LONDON

THE STOCK market fell for seventh time in the last eight sessions, as fears over the outlook for interest rates in the UK and the US continued to dent sentiment.

The FTSE 100 closed 53.1 points down at 6,014.6, its lowest close since 11 August.

The best performer was electricity generator National Power, which gained 7 per cent amid continuing talk that it was soon to announce plans to separate its UK and international operations.

Market report, page 23

NEW YORK

WALL STREET fell as fears that Hurricane Floyd, which was yesterday heading north, would bring a premature end to trading prompted dealers to unwind positions.

By midday the Dow had tumbled 120 to 10,680 as dealers tried to exit the market ahead of today's "triple witching" expiry of futures and options.

FDX, parent of Federal Express, fell 12 per cent after warning that higher fuel costs had hit first quarter profits.

TOKYO

THE JAPANESE stock market tumbled as a rapid rise in the yen sent a chill through the recent sanguine mood on the nascent economic recovery.

The Nikkei 225 fell 485.63 points or 2.73 per cent to 17,291.59, after plunging more than 4 per cent during the afternoon. Typhoon York shut Hong Kong's markets.

"The yen has gone up too rapidly to precisely reflect the health of the Japanese economy," said one strategist. Overnight the US currency dipped to 103.25 yen.

GREEK STOCKS broke into record territory with strong buying for all sectors except banks and OTE Telecom.

The share index added 2.27 per cent or 140.26 points to a record close of 6,321.31 from Wednesday's 6,181.05, also setting a historic intra-session high at 6,323 points.

The powerful run to record levels in recent weeks was liquidity-driven and had little relation to fundamentals, analysts said.

ATHENS

MOSCOW

RUSSIAN SHARES closed lower, weighed down by a new bomb attack, and traders said prices were set to fall even further.

The RTS1-Interfax index fell 5.65 per cent to 87.53, while the broader Reuters Russian composite slipped 6.82 per cent to 372.61.

The summer's downward trend accelerated recently on concerns about a string of bomb attacks and fighting between federal troops and Islamic rebels in Dagestan.

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