* French bluechips near 10-yr high; German DAX hits record
* Wall Street little changed as energy shares weigh
* Fed begins two-day monetary policy meeting
(Updates prices, changes comment)
By Rodrigo Campos
NEW YORK, May 2 A measure of stocks across major
markets globally inched up to a record high on Tuesday, lifted
by gains in Europe amid corporate and economic strength, while
crude futures tumbled as prices breached key technical levels.
A broad index of European stocks rose to its highest since
August 2015, boosted by company earnings and as a survey of
factory activity in the euro zone jumped to its highest level
since April 2011. French bluechips hit their highest
level in nearly a decade and Germany's DAX set a record
Robust results have helped lift share prices across the
globe this year, with major U.S. indexes at or near record
levels. First-quarter profits of companies on the benchmark S&P
500 index are expected to have risen 13.9 percent, the strongest
rise since 2011, according to Thomson Reuters data.
Shares of Apple were up 0.6 percent ahead of its
results after the closing bell. Gains in Mastercard, which was
up 1.3 percent, were offset by a 0.5 percent decline in Pfizer
after both companies posted earnings.
BP shares rose 1.6 percent after the oil major's
first-quarter profit tripled.
"The economy is doing better within Europe, but these also
tend to be global companies," said Isabelle Mateos y Lago, chief
multi-asset strategist at BlackRock.
"The main reason why we are optimistic is because European
companies are extremely well plugged in to benefit from the
global reflation story, from China and U.S. growth picking up."
The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 21.52 points,
or 0.1 percent, to 20,934.98, the S&P 500 lost 0.04
points to 2,388.29 and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 4.83
points, or 0.08 percent, to 6,086.77.
The pan-European STOXX 600 rose 0.75 percent to end
at a near 21-month high and MSCI's gauge of stocks across the
globe gained 0.25 percent and set an all-time
The U.S. dollar hit a six-week high of 112.30 Japanese yen
as traders anticipated that despite some recent weak data
the Federal Reserve would prepare markets for an interest rate
increase in June in its statement following a policy meeting
The yen weakened 0.16 percent against the greenback to
112.02 per dollar.
The Fed is expected to hold interest rates steady after its
two-day meeting that began Tuesday, as it pauses to examine more
economic data, but may hint it is on track for an increase in
Traders do not anticipate a hike on Wednesday but are
currently forecasting a 65.2 percent chance of a 25 basis point
hike at the Fed's June meeting, according to Thomson Reuters
U.S. benchmark 10-year Treasury notes last rose
11/32 in price to yield 2.2892 percent, from 2.327 percent late
on Monday, ahead of the statement from the central bank on
WTI plunged amid heavy technical selling as it fell through
the $48.20 level, traders said, with about 50,000 contracts
changing hands in 5 minutes. The selling also pulled global
benchmark Brent crude lower.
U.S. crude fell 2.64 percent to $47.55 per barrel
and Brent was last at $50.36, down 2.25 percent on the
Gold touched a three-week low of $1,251.37 an ounce as
demand for the safe-haven asset waned. Spot gold was flat
at $1,256.60 an ounce.
(Reporting by Rodrigo Campos, Additional reporting by Helen
Reid and Danilo Masoni in London and Sam Forgione, Lewis
Krauskopf, Scott DiSavino and Karen Brettell in New York;
Editing by Chizu Nomiyama)