Yen dented after Tokyo warning; oil prices slump

Mon May 9, 2016 4:29pm EDT
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By Lewis Krauskopf

NEW YORK (Reuters) - The yen tumbled against the U.S. dollar on Monday as Japan signaled it was ready to intervene in the currency market, while a sharp drop in oil prices undercut equities.

U.S. stock indexes ended mixed as healthcare shares helped counter a 1.2 percent drop for the S&P energy sector .SPNY. Europe's broad stock index gained, supported by a 1.1 percent rise for Germany's DAX index .GDAXI on positive news for the country's economy.

U.S. Treasury yields fell as investors lowered estimates that the Federal Reserve will raise interest rates in June, after Friday's weaker-than-expected April jobs report.

China's exports and imports fell more than expected in April, underlining weak demand at home and abroad and weighing on materials stocks as well as copper prices.

"There is, and there has been for the last week or so, a bit of a risk-off tone to the markets with concern about the economy," said Tim Ghriskey, chief investment officer of Solaris Asset Management in New York. "There is a growing concern about the U.S. economy and global economies."

The Dow Jones industrial average .DJI fell 34.72 points, or 0.2 percent, to 17,705.91, the S&P 500 .SPX gained 1.55 points, or 0.08 percent, to 2,058.69 and the Nasdaq Composite .IXIC added 14.05 points, or 0.3 percent, to 4,750.21.

The benchmark S&P 500 is up slightly in 2016 after recovering from a rough start to the year, with volatility in oil prices causing jitters in other markets.

"To break out and rally above the recent highs, we need oil to stabilize in the $40 to $60 range," said Jack DeGan, chief investment officer at Harbor Advisory in Portsmouth, New Hampshire.   Continued...

Light is cast on a Japanese 10,000 yen note as it's reflected in a plastic board in Tokyo, in this February 28, 2013 picture illustration.   REUTERS/Shohei Miyano/File Photo