NEW YORK, New York - Stocks in the U.S. defied the global trend on Friday and lost ground. Markets elsewhere saw the week out on a positive note with bourses across the world closing with appreciable gains.
The U.S. dollar which had been sold heavily up until Thursday, rebounded in Asia on Friday. Those gains were added to in Europe and the U.S. leaving the greenback well bid at the end of the week.
What drove markets were mixed signals from members of the Fed, however on Friday a spokesman for the central bank said the comments were not meant to telegraph how the Fed will manage rates going forward. Speculation of a large rate cut diminished, with expectaions now being for a quarter-point cut.
"It appears that the Fed has communicated its message," Bucky Hellwig, senior vice president at BB&T Wealth Management in Birmingham, Alabama told Reuters Thomson. "They're basically trying to clarify their policy."
At the 4:00pm close on Friday in New York, the Dow Jones industrials were down 68.77 points or 0.25% at 27,154.20.
The Nasdaq Composite dropped 60.75 points or 0.74% to 8,146.49.
The Standard and Poor's 500 fell 18.50 points or 0.62% to 2,976.61.
The euro plummeted to 1.1217 by the close in New York trading on Friday. The British pound fell to 1.2498.
The Japanese yen eased to 107.75, while the Swiss franc was largely unchanged at 0.9828.
The Canadian dollar edged down to 1.3037. The Australian dollar fell to 0.7043, while the New Zealand dollar slid to 0.6760.
In overseas markets, the FTSE 100 in London gained 0.21%.
The German Dax rose 0.26%, while the Paris-based CAC 40 added 0.03%.
In Asian markets, in Japan the Nikkei 225 erased Thursday's losses, gaining 420.75 points or 2.00% to close at 21,466.99 on Friday.
In China, the Shanghai Composite gained 23.02 points or 0.79% to 2,924.20.
The Australian All Ordinaries climbed 50.80 points or 0.75% to 6,786.20.
The Hang Seng in Hong Kong advanced 303.74 points or 1.07% to 28,765.40.