* Stock markets climb for fourth day, Wall Street at record
* ECB spooks bonds with stimulus slowdown, euro slumps
* China trade beats forecasts, commodity imports jump
* Oil prices steady after slip, steel surge lifts iron ore
* Graphic: World FX rates in 2016 tmsnrt.rs/2egbfVh
By Marc Jones
LONDON, Dec 8 The euro dived following a brief
surge and bond markets were left dazed on Thursday, after the
European Central Bank said it would slow its stimulus programme
from April but also extend it until at least the end of next
ECB President Mario Draghi stressed that the move, which
will see its purchases drop from 80 billion euros a month to 60
billion, was not the kind of Federal Reserve-style 'tapering'
that caused a global market selloff in 2013.
Stock markets and banks in particular cheered the
move. Wall Street was at record highs as it opened, while
European banks climbed as much 4 percent on hopes for an
end to pressure on their profits from low interest rates.
Bond market had a far more adverse reaction. Italian and
Spanish bonds saw their 10-year yields jump 13 to 14 basis
points before cutting the losses by around a half as the ECB
announced a number of tweaks to its plans.
"A sustained presence is also the message of today's
decision," ECB President Draghi said.
"Uncertainty prevails everywhere," he told a news conference
after a decision he called "pragmatic and flexible".
The euro gained almost a cent after the bank's statement to
hit $1.0875 but then fell 1.2 percent at $1.0615.
Euribor money market futures <0#FEI:> fell as much 8 bps
across the 2017-2020 curve as investors moved to price in a slim
chance of a rise in euro zone interest rates late next year.
Germany's 10-year bond yield, the benchmark for the region,
was up 8 bps at 0.43 percent, after falling as low as 0.37
percent, level with where it stood just before the ECB decision.
"Less for longer is the take-away from the ECB so far," said
Mizuho strategist Peter Chatwell. "However, make no mistake, the
ECB has eased monetary policy with this move."
Wall Street pulled back following a strong earthquake in
California after New York trading began, but that wasn't enough
to subdue MSCI's world index amid Europe's gains
and after Asia ex-Japan had hit a one-month high overnight.
Risk appetite there got a boost when China reported upbeat
trade figures, with exports and imports both beating forecasts.
Resource imports were strong, a major reason prices for bulk
commodities have been rising.
The resource-heavy and China-sensitive Australian market
jumped 1.2 percent, as did MSCI's broadest index of
Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan.
A record peak for Samsung helped lift South
Korea 2 percent and Tokyo's Nikkei gained 1.45
percent as it brushed off a disappointing downward revision to
Japan's third-quarter growth.
"The (China data) improvement reflects a strengthening in
global demand, with recent business surveys suggesting that
developed economies are on track to end the year on a strong
note," said Capital Economics' Julian Evans-Pritchard.
In commodity markets, oil steadied after declining on doubts
that production cuts promised by OPEC and Russia would be deep
enough to end a supply overhang.
U.S. crude climbed back above $50 a barrel and Brent
futures rose to $53.70. Industry chatter also centred on
a surprise Russian deal to sell a 10.5 billion-euro, 19.5
percent stake in oil giant Rosneft to Qatar and
commodities trader Glencore.
Gold nudged lower after climbing in Europe and
commodities including iron ore and coking coal struggled to hold
on to gains made after Chinese demand drove steel prices to
their highest since April 2014.
Back in the currency market, the dollar gained from the
euro's swoon to jump 0.8 percent against a basket of
currencies and back up to 114 yen after a largely subdued
New Zealand's dollar was another big gainer after its
central bank head made it clear the bank was probably done with
cutting interest rates .
(Additional reporting by Patrick Graham in London and Wayne
Cole in Sydney; Editing by Larry King)