China's anti-lockdown protests shake stocks and oil



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China announces record new local COVID cases

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Commodities sold off amid demand concerns

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Dollar slips against yen, Swiss franc

By Sinéad Carew and Lawrence White

NEW YORK/ LONDON, Nov 28 (Reuters) - U.S. stocks tracked a decline in equities worldwide and oil was sold off on Monday as rare protests in major Chinese cities against the country's strict zero-COVID curbs fuelled concerns about global economic growth.

A surge in COVID cases and clashes between police and protesters across several major Chinese cities over the weekend also helped push U.S. Treasury yields lower and even safe-haven assets like the dollar and gold were in the red.

"There are concerns over China's increasing COVID cases and how the government is going to react. We've gone from what we considered to be a reopening to likely greater restrictions," said Matthew Miskin, co-chief investment strategist at John Hancock Investment Management.

"If you've got one of the largest economies coming off-line that's going to weigh on global growth. It's going to influence all companies one way or another."

The Dow Jones Industrial Average .DJI fell 192.36 points, or 0.56%, to 34,154.67, the S&P 500 .SPX lost 30.51 points, or 0.76%, to 3,995.61 and the Nasdaq Composite .IXIC dropped 90.21 points, or 0.8%, to 11,136.14.

The pan-European STOXX 600 index .STOXX slipped 0.50% and MSCI's gauge of stocks across the globe .MIWD00000PUS shed 0.71%.

Emerging market stocks .MSCIEF dropped 0.94%. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan .MIAPJ0000PUS closed 1.1% lower, while Japan's Nikkei .N225 lost 0.42%.

Oil prices, sensitive to the strictness of China's lockdown as a barometer for demand, pared some losses but earlier U.S. crude had fallen to its lowest level since late December 2021. Brent crude LCOc1 after falling to its lowest level since early January, was last trading at $82.49, down 1.36% on the day. U.S. crude CLc1 was down 0.93% to $75.57 per barrel.

In currencies, the safe-haven Swiss franc and Japanese yen gained, while the Aussie dollar and Chinese yuan underperformed. The U.S. dollar dipped, meanwhile, which analysts said was unusual given its typical safe-haven role.

“It does suggest perhaps that the swing against the dollar in the sense of the broader market mood or market positioning is perhaps running a little bit deeper this morning and that might well be significant,” Shaun Osborne, chief FX strategist at Scotiabank in Toronto, said.

The dollar move had some market analysts blaming falling U.S. bond yields which made the greenback less attractive against Japan's currency.

The dollar index =USD fell 0.292%, with the euro EUR= up 0.13% to $1.0409. The Japanese yen strengthened 0.28% versus the greenback at 138.71 per dollar, while sterling GBP= was last trading at $1.2044, down 0.41% on the day.

The dollar was down 0.4% against the Swiss franc CHF=EBS after earlier falling as much as 0.77%.

CHINA FEARS

In Treasuries Benchmark 10-year notes US10YT=RR were down 2.8 basis points to 3.674%, from 3.702% late on Friday.

The 30-year bond US30YT=RR was last down 2.7 basis points to yield 3.725%, from 3.752%, while the 2-year note US2YT=RR was down 3.9 basis points to yield 4.4402%.

Fears about Chinese economic growth hit other commodities markets, with copper and other metals also falling.

The worries about China's COVID policies overshadowed any support from the Chinese central bank's 25 basis point cut to the reserve requirement ratio (RRR) announced on Friday, which would free about $70 billion to prop up a faltering economy.

China had announced a fifth consecutive day of record new local COVID cases with 40,052 infections on Monday, while in Shanghai demonstrators and police clashed on Sunday night as protests flared for a third day.

There were also protests in Wuhan, Chengdu and parts of the capital Beijing as COVID restrictions were put in place.

Gold prices gave up gains after touching a one-week high of $1763.70 per ounce. Spot gold XAU= dropped 0.5% to $1,748.07 an ounce.



World FX rates YTD Link
Global asset performance Link
Asian stock markets Link



Reporting Sinéad Carew and Karen Brettell in New York,
Lawrence White in London, Scott Murdoch in Sydney; Editing by
Barbara Lewis, Chizu Nomiyama and Susan Fenton



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