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Emerging markets under pressure as dollar rises

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Emerging markets under pressure as dollar rises
FILE PHOTO: A U.S. Dollar note is seen in this June 22, 2017 illustration photo. REUTERS/Thomas White/Illustration/File Photo   -   Copyright  Thomas White(Reuters)
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By Sinéad Carew

NEWYORK (Reuters) – Stocks fell in major markets around the world on Tuesday and emerging markets currencies lost ground while the U.S. dollar rose as investors looked for safety as they braced for an escalation in the U.S.-China trade conflict.

Emerging markets stocks and currencies were under added pressure on concerns about inflation in Turkey, and after data showed South Africa had slumped into recession in the second quarter.

U.S. Treasury yields rose as investors prepared for heavy corporate debt supply, and as falling Italian debt yields reduced safety demand for U.S. government debt.

The public comment period on a U.S. proposal for new tariffs on Chinese goods is set to end on Thursday. U.S. President Donald Trump can then follow through on plans to impose levies on $200 billion more of Chinese imports.

U.S.-Canada trade talks ended on Friday with no deal to revamp the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) after Trump told Congress he would sign a bilateral trade pact with Mexico.

“Since August was a good month for stocks, we are seeing some profit taking and the headlines on China negotiations seem to be weighing a little bit as well,” said Sean O’Hara, president of Pacer ETFs in Paoli, Pennsylvania.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average <.DJI> fell 11.05 points, or 0.04 percent, to 25,953.77, the S&P 500 <.SPX> lost 5.14 points, or 0.18 percent, to 2,896.38 and the Nasdaq Composite <.IXIC> dropped 19.89 points, or 0.25 percent, to 8,089.65.

The pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 index <.FTEU3> lost 0.74 percent. MSCI’s gauge of stocks across the globe <.MIWD00000PUS> shed 0.50 percent for its biggest one-day decline since Aug. 15, weighed down by declines in Wall Street’s major indexes and a drop in European stocks after China closed higher.

MSCI’s emerging market stocks index <.MSCIEF> was down 0.8 percent and on track for its fifth straight day of declines.

In currencies, the U.S. dollar index <.DXY>, which measures the greenback against a basket of major currencies, rose 0.33 percent, with the euro <EUR=> down 0.4 percent to $1.1576.

The Canadian dollar weakened to a six-week low against its U.S. counterpart amid an uncertain outlook for Canada’s trading arrangement with the United States.

The Canadian dollar fell 0.69 percent versus the greenback at 1.32 per dollar.

The dollar gained 3.3 percent on the South African rand <ZAR=D3>, and 1 percent against Turkey’s Lira.

A JPMorgan emerging market currency index <.MIEM00000CUS> fell to its lowest since May 2017. The Mexican peso <MXN=D3> also slipped against the dollar.

“We are just waiting for something to turn the EM (emerging market) sentiment because the valuations look really attractive, but it’s just a slow meltdown at the moment,” said Standard Life Aberdeen EM portfolio manager Viktor Szabo.

Benchmark 10-year notes <US10YT=RR> last fell 14/32 in price to yield 2.904 percent, from 2.853 percent late on Friday.

The 30-year bond <US30YT=RR> last fell 38/32 in price to yield 3.0697 percent, from 3.009 percent late on Friday.

Oil prices rose on Tuesday as the market prepared for potential supply disruptions due to a hurricane forecast to hit the U.S. Gulf Coast, but gains were capped by a report that Cushing, Oklahoma, stockpiles rose last week.

U.S. crude <CLcv1> fell 0.72 percent to $69.30 per barrel and Brent <LCOcv1> was last at $77.69, down 0.59 percent on the day.

(Additional reporting by Saqib Iqbal Ahmed, Karen Brettell, Stephanie Kelly in New York, Shreyashi Sanyal in Bengaluru, Mark Jones in London, Abhinav Ramnarayan and Saikat Chatterjee; Editing by Bill Berkrot and Susan Thomas)

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