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World stock markets lose $5.2 trillion last month PDF Print E-mail
Tuesday, 12 February 2008

Agence France-Presse . Paris

World stockmarkets lost 5.2 trillion dollars in January thanks to the fallout from the US subprime crisis and fears of a global economic slowdown, Standard Poor’s said Saturday. ‘If investors thought the market could only go up, January’s wake-up call pulled them back into reality,’ the independent credit ratings’ provider said. Standard Poor’s said the world’s equity markets lost a combined 5.2 trillion dollars as emerging markets fell 12.44 per cent and developed markets lost 7.83 per cent to register one of the worst starts to a new year.

‘There were few safe havens in January as 50 of the 52 global equity markets ended the month in negative territory, with 25 of them posting double-digit losses,’ said Howard Silverblatt, senior index analyst at SPs. All 26 developed equity markets posted negative returns in January, with 16 losing at least 10 per cent of their value. The January declines negated all previous market gains, leaving all of the developed markets in the red for the trailing three month period.

In Paris, the stock exchange lost 12.27 per cent over the course of January, 15.27 per cent over the past three months, more than wiping out its gains over the last 12 months — down 0.74 per cent. The situation was even worse in London — down 8.85 per cent in January, down 16.54 per cent for the past three months and down 2.22 per cent over 12 months — and in the US, which was down 6.07 per cent in January, down 10.78 per cent over three months and down 2.42 per cent over 12 months.

The story was similar in Japan, where the market lost 4.47 per cent in January, 10.31 per cent over three months and down 10.44 per cent over the past 12 months. In Germany, in contrast, although the stock exchange lost 13.72 per cent in January and 13.84 per cent over three months, it was up 13.43 per cent over the year.

Equity markets in emerging countries also suffered heavy losses in January, apart from Morocco which gained 10.17 per cent and Jordan, which was up by 3.11 per cent. Turkey was the most affected with January losses reaching 22.70 per cent, followed by China on 21.40 per cent, Russia on 16.12 per cent and India at 16 per cent. But only Argentina and Taiwan slipped into negative territory for the 12-month period.

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