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Global Markets: Safe haven assets slide on hope Syria mission is accomplished

Reuters  |  LONDON 

By Ramnarayan

LONDON (Reuters) - Investors shed safe-haven assets such as gold and government bonds while plummeted on Monday on expectations that the weekend's missile attacks on would not mark the start of greater Western involvement in the conflict there.

European shares were broadly flat, however, adding to a mixed picture in Asian stock markets and suggesting that a degree of caution still prevails.

"There is some relief that a direct confrontation between the U.S. and over has been avoided," said Daniel Lenz, after Russian warned on Sunday that further Western attacks in would bring chaos to world affairs.

Saturday's strikes marked the biggest intervention by Western countries against Syrian and his ally Russia, which is facing further economic sanctions over its role in the conflict there.

The United States, Britain and said the missile strikes targeted Syria's and were not aimed at toppling Assad or intervening in the civil war. U.S. tweeted "Mission accomplished" after the attack, underlining expectations that Western action would be limited.

Gold prices fell a quarter of a percent to $1,341.51 an ounce while European and bond yields -- which move inversely to prices -- rose across the board.

Yield on both German and U.S. 10-year government bonds, seen as among the most liquid and safe assets in the world, were both at their highest level in three weeks.

meanwhile dropped sharply, with Brent crude shedding over 1.5 percent to $71.45 a barrel, though a rise in U.S. drilling for new production also dragged on prices.

MSCI's world equity index, which tracks shares in 47 countries, was flat on the day and a pan-European stock index was marginally lower.

U.S. stock futures were pointing to a higher opening on Wall Street.

That market is now focused on U.S. first quarter earnings, especially after February's sell-off and tech sector woes took valuations down to more reasonable levels, said Salman Ahmed, at Investment Managers.

"If there is a genuine dent in earnings, people will sit up and take notice -- stock and sector-specific issues are becoming important," he said.

He added that regulation will also be a -- citing the example of -- and for the sector.

EYEING ABE

The dollar failed to hold its early gains on the yen and eased to 107.20, though that was still up on last week's low around 106.62.

Dealers were keeping a wary eye on Japanese politics after a survey showed support for had fallen to 26.7 percent, the lowest since he took office in late 2012.

Abe's sliding ratings are raising doubts about whether he can win a third three-year term as ruling in a September vote, or if he might even resign before the party election.

Japan's Nikkei rose 0.3 percent while MSCI's broadest index of shares outside slipped 0.4 percent as Chinese blue chips skidded 1.7 percent.

The euro was a touch higher at $1.2357, while the dollar index eased to 89.621.

For Live Markets blog on European and UK stock markets open a window on Eikon by pressing F9 and type in 'Live Markets' in the

(Reporting by Ramnarayan, Additional reporting by Wayne Cole on SYDNEY, Dhara Ranasinghe and Sujata Rao in LONDON; Editing by Catherine Evans)

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Mon, April 16 2018. 14:32 IST
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