(Adds U.S. market open, byline, dateline; previous LONDON)
* Wall St, European stocks slump on weak China trade data
* Dollar weakens against yen, euro
* Bond prices rise on Chinese data
By Herbert Lash
NEW YORK, Oct 13 Global equity markets slumped
to a three-month low on Thursday while the dollar and benchmark
sovereign bond yields slipped, after a sharp decline in Chinese
exports revived concerns about the health of the world's
Stocks on Wall Street fell almost 1 percent, and in Europe a
bit more, following data that showed Chinese imports in dollar
terms were back in contraction territory and exports dropped by
a sharper-than-expected 10 percent.
The disappointing trade figures pointed to weaker demand
both at home and aboard while deepening concerns over the latest
depreciation in China's yuan currency, which hit a
fresh six-year low against a firming U.S. dollar.
"If the Chinese economy is struggling it is a problem for
the global economy and you're seeing that reflected in the
capital markets, whether it be the strength in the dollar or the
volatility in equities," said Michael Arone, chief investment
strategist at State Street Global Advisors in Boston.
A hard landing in China, if that were to occur, would pose a
bigger problem to the global economy than a "hard exit" by
Britain from the European Union because of China's greater
economic size and trade profile, Arone said.
China concerns could also deter the Federal Reserve from
raising U.S. interest rates in December as minutes released
Wednesday from a September policy meeting suggested, he said.
The FTSEurofirst 300 index of leading regional
shares fell 1.1 percent to 1,321.50, while MSCI's all-country
world stock index of equity performance in 46
countries declined 0.84 percent to lows last seen on July 12.
The Dow Jones industrial average fell 163.52 points,
or 0.9 percent, to 17,980.68. The S&P 500 slid 18.62
points, or 0.87 percent, to 2,120.56 and the Nasdaq Composite
lost 49.70 points, or 0.95 percent, to 5,189.32.
The dollar tumbled from a seven-month high as risk appetite
took a turn for the worse on the soft Chinese data, which
rattled markets that expect the Fed to boost rates by year-end.
The U.S. currency also fell from a more than two-month high
against the yen and Swiss franc, two safe-haven currencies that
benefit in times of political or financial stress.
The dollar was last down 0.61 percent against the yen at
103.54 yen. The euro fell briefly below $1.10 for the
first time since July, but quickly recovered to trade 0.35
percent higher on the day at $1.1043.
Oil prices fell more than 1 percent after U.S. government
data reported the first domestic crude inventory growth in six
weeks, a build above market expectations.
Brent crude was down 26 cents at $51.55 per barrel,
and U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude fell 24 cents to $49.94.
The weak Chinese data pushed investors to buy safe-haven
government debt after two straight days of selling.
The 10-year note rose 10/32 in price to yield
(Reporting by Herbert Lash; Editing by Nick Zieminski)