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NS: Global shares drop on jitters over Trump reform agenda
 
SEOUL, South Korea — Global stock markets fell Wednesday, with Tokyo tumbling more than 2 percent, as jitters over President Donald Trump’s ability to deliver on his reform agenda darkened sentiment. German’s DAX lost 0.7 percent and the CAC 40 in France fell 0.8 percent, while futures showed U.S. stocks were set to open lower.

KEEPING SCORE: Britain’s FTSE 100 slid 0.9 percent to 7,309.15. France’s CAC 40 dropped 0.8 percent to 4,964.41 and Germany’s DAX fell 0.7 percent to 11,880.78. Auguring a downbeat start for Wall Street, S&P futures fell 0.2 percent while Dow futures also lost 0.3 percent.

ASIA’S DAY: Japan’s Nikkei 225 stock index fell 2.1 percent to close at 19,041.38 and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index dropped 1.1 percent to 24,320.41. Australia’s S&P ASX 200 lost 1.6 percent to 5,684.50. South Korea’s Kospi lost 0.5 percent to 2,168.30 and the Shanghai Composite index fell 0.5 percent to 3,245.22.

HEALTH CARE AGENDA: The U.S. House of Representatives is scheduled to vote Thursday on the Republican-backed American Health Care Act, but it’s not clear if the House or the Senate will approve the bill.

ANALYST’S VIEWPOINT: “As this market correction extends, investors may now get an answer as to just how much current stock valuations are actually dependent on the assumed boost from the Trump administration’s plans for fiscal stimulus, or whether recent gains have been mainly about improvements already evident in the U.S. and other economies,” Ric Spooner, chief market analyst for CMC Markets, said in a commentary.

JAPAN TRADE: Japanese shares sank after the U.S. dollar weakened against the yen, potentially hurting earnings of exporters. The government’s report that Japan’s trade surplus more than doubled in February from a year earlier as exports to Asia surged failed to make up for the yen’s gains, which inevitably drive shares lower.

ENERGY: Benchmark U.S. crude lost 41 cents to $47.83 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. It fell 67 cents to $48.24 a barrel on Tuesday. Brent crude, used to price international oils, fell 85 cents to $50.11 a barrel.

CURRENCIES: The dollar slipped to 111.25 yen from 111.72 yen. The euro weakened to $1.0780 from $1.0810.

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