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September 24, 2021

Euro extends drop as Italian bond yields soar

European stocks turned sharply lower Wednesday and the euro fell heavily against the dollar as any initial relief over Italian Prime Minister Berlusconi’s pledge to resign faded over worries about Italy’s debt pile which pushed yields on its 2-year and 10-year bonds to euro-era highs of over 7.0 pc, Wall Street Journal reports. By 11.15 GMT, the “Berlusconi-bounce” had well and truly ended. The Stoxx Europe 600 index was down 1.8 pc pc at 236.06. London’s FTSE 100 was also down 1.8 pc, at 5468.82, Frankfurt’s DAX was 1 pc lower at 5816.32 and Paris’s CAC-40 was down 2.2 pc at 3073.21. The euro changed hands at USD 1.3649 in recent action, down from USD1.3836 in North American trade late Tuesday. Italy’s benchmark 10-year bond yield spiked 82 basis points to 7.40 pc, a new euro-era high and well above the 7 pc level widely viewed as unsustainable over the long term by strategists. Spot gold was at USD 1,783.10 a troy ounce, up USD 2.90 from its New York settlement Tuesday. December Nymex crude oil futures were down USD 1.45 at USD 95.35 a barrel and Brent oil futures were down USD 1.28 at USD 113.72. December bund contract was up 0.75 at 138.75.

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