Fresh losses in the technology sector sent global stocks lower Wednesday while the euro and government bond yields continued to climb as investors reassessed the course of eurozone monetary policy.
The Stoxx Europe 600 fell 0.6% shortly after markets opened, echoing declines on Wall Street and in Asian trading. Europe's tech sector was down 1.3% after a tech-led pullback in U.S. stocks sent the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the S&P 500 to their biggest daily declines in more than a month on Tuesday.
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Shares of oil-and-gas companies were also under pressure as Brent crude oil pared gains after European markets closed Tuesday and was last down 0.5% at $46.67 a barrel.
Eurozone stocks also grappled with a stronger local currency, with the euro last up 0.2% at $1.1356, around its highest since the June 2016 U.K. referendum on European Union membership. It has risen 7.9% against the dollar so far this year, making it among the strongest performing currencies.
The euro posted its best day against the dollar in a year and bond yields climbed after European Central Bank President Mario Draghi hinted Tuesday that the bank might start winding down its massive stimulus program in response to a pickup in the eurozone economy.
"The market's expectation was for this change of tone to come somewhat later in the year," said strategists at Mizuho, noting his upbeat comments on inflation and wage growth stood in contrast to the bank's staff projections earlier this month.
Yields on 10-year German bunds continued to rise Wednesday to 0.396% from 0.342% on Tuesday, while Treasurys climbed to 2.231% from 2.198%. Yields move inversely to prices.
Mr. Draghi is scheduled to appear again later Wednesday on a panel in Portugal, as are other ECB officials including Yves Mersch and Vítor Constâncio, as some investors remain skeptical of the gains that followed Tuesday's speech.
Earlier, Asian equities were mostly lower, tracking declines on Wall Street and in Europe on Tuesday.
Korea's Kospi's IT subindex slid 2.3%% while Taiwan's Taiex was off 1.2%, echoing a selloff in U.S. technology companies. Following declines of nearly 2% by Alphabet, Microsoft and Amazon, Taiwan's Catcher Technology, Wistron and Pegatron all fell slightly more than 2%.
Japan's Nikkei Stock Average fell 0.5% as higher sovereign-debt yields supported shares of Japanese insurers which are heavy buyers of such securities.
Australia's S&P/ASX 200 was up 0.5% however, helped by gains in oil and metals companies after prices of those commodities had rebounded Tuesday after local markets closed.
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(END) Dow Jones Newswires
June 28, 2017 03:45 ET (07:45 GMT)