Global shares tumble on global growth concerns; Treasury yields fall

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Stock indexes worldwide tumbled on Monday, led by banking stocks in Europe and technology stocks on Wall Street on persisting fears of a global economic slowdown, while benchmark 10-year Treasury yields hit their lowest in a year on demand for assets deemed less risky.

European shares extended the previous week's big losses, with the FTSEurofirst 300 .FTEU3 index of top regional shares closing at its lowest level since Oct. 2013.

The STOXX Europe 600 banking index .SX7P fell 5.6 percent, making it the top sectoral decliner. The index has lost more than 24 percent this year on concerns about banks' profitability and capital strength in an environment where monetary stimulus continues to put pressure on margins.

Wall Street continued Friday's technology-led selloff, with the benchmark S&P 500 stock index .SPX falling as much as 2.5 percent. The S&P financial index .SPSY fell more than 3 percent, with Bank of America BAC.N, JPMorgan JPM.N and Citigroup C.N dragging down the index.

The cost of insuring the European financial sector’s senior debt against default also climbed to its highest level since late 2013.

U.S. crude prices fell after a meeting between Saudi Arabia and Venezuela failed to reassure investors of measures to bolster sagging prices.

Chesapeake CHK.N tumbled 34 percent after sources told Reuters that the natgas company had tapped existing adviser Kirkland & Ellis to explore restructuring options. Earlier, the stock halved before being halted.

Traders work at their desks in front of the German share price index, DAX board, at the stock exchange in Frankfurt, Germany, February 8, 2016. REUTERS/Staff/Remote

“We need oil to stabilize to provide some confidence for investors, partly because to a degree, investors’ stress is high, earnings visibility is low, and market internals continue to weaken,” said Terry Sandven, chief equity strategist at U.S. Bank Wealth Management in Minneapolis.

Brent crude was last down 58 cents, or 1.7 percent, at $33.48 a barrel. U.S. crude was last down 71 cents, or 2.3 percent, at $30.18 per barrel.

MSCI’s all-country world equity index was last down 6.72 points or 1.83 percent, at 359.85.

The Dow Jones industrial average .DJI was last down 393.92 points, or 2.43 percent, at 15,811.05. The S&P 500 .SPX was down 49.04 points, or 2.61 percent, at 1,831.01. The Nasdaq Composite .IXIC was down 140.09 points, or 3.21 percent, at 4,223.05.

Europe's broad FTSEurofirst 300 index .FTEU3 closed 3.38 percent lower at 1,239.73.

Benchmark 10-year Treasury yields reached a one-year low of 1.7350 percent US10YT=RR, as the stock market decline and concerns about slowing global growth increased investor appetite for safe-haven government debt.

U.S. 10-year Treasury notes were last up 30/32 in price to yield 1.7431, from a yield of 1.848 percent late Friday.

“Weakness in global equities is adding pressure on Treasuries,” said Ian Lyngen, senior government bond strategist at CRT Capital in Stamford, Connecticut, in reference to yields.

The dollar fell to its lowest level against the yen since Nov. 2014 of 115.170 yen JPY=EBS, partly on doubts about the effectiveness of the Bank of Japan's negative interest rate policy.

Safe-haven spot gold XAU= reached a peak of $1,200.60 an ounce, its strongest since June 22.

Additional reporting by Jemima Kelly, Nigel Stephenson and Susan Fenton in London, Dion Rabouin and Tariro Mzezewa in New York and Abhiram Nandakumar in Bengaluru; Editing by Bernadette Baum and Nick Zieminski