The dollar fell to a nearly four-week low against the yen on Monday as softer-than-expected US manufacturing data suggested the economy may have run out of steam at the end of the first quarter.
Stocks kicked off the second quarter on a sour note Monday following a weaker-than-expected ISM manufacturing report and as investors took a breather after the S&P 500 finally broke through its record close last week.
Prices for U.S. Treasurys rose on Monday, after data showed U.S. manufacturing growth slowed in March, feeding worries about the strength of the recovery.
Gold settled higher in light holiday trade, as the market digested U.S. manufacturing and construction reports that painted a mixed picture of the economy ahead of the all-important nonfarm payrolls report later in the week.
Brent crude rose above $111 a barrel in choppy trading on Monday, while U.S. crude prices fell as a pipeline leak in Arkansas threatened to increase the glut of oil in the U.S. Midwest.
Risk appetite in Asia was hurt after economic data for the region's two largest economies came in below expectations, while overall trading volume remained subdued given the closure of some markets for the Easter holidays.
The euro hovered near four-month lows against the dollar on Friday, beset by political deadlock in Italy and worries huge losses Cypriot depositors have been forced to stomach.
The start of the second quarter gives bulls a lot to think about: the US jobs report, plus central-bank meetings in Europe and Japan. Will they keep running or take a break?
The euro rebounded from a recent four-month low against the dollar on Thursday, a trend analysts see as tenuous because investors continue to fret about the Cyprus crisis.
Gold settled below $1,600 an ounce, as banks reopened in Cyprus for the first time in two weeks without signs of panic withdrawals, sapping demand for low-risk assets.
Oil rose, underpinned by expectations of a revival in demand growth in the United States, the world's biggest oil consumer, while Europe's debt worries capped gains.
U.S. Treasurys prices gained for a third straight week as resurgent fears over the euro zone helped bonds claw back losses from January and February and end the quarter only slightly weaker on Thursday, after a turbulent start to the year.
European shares closed higher on Thursday after Cypriot banks re-opened after an almost two-week closure.
The euro fell to a four-month low against the dollar on Wednesday, suffering from growing conviction that Cyprus's rescue will prove a template for future euro zone bailouts.
Gold rose 0.5 percent, snapping a three-day losing streak, as renewed euro zone worries and hopes the Federal Reserve will continue its loose monetary policy triggered bullion buying.
Fears about the euro zone sent benchmark 10-year Treasurys yields to more than three-week lows as investors fretted over further bank restructurings and Italy's soft bond auction.
Oil slowly crept towards $110 a barrel in choppy trading on Wednesday, pressured by rising crude stockpiles in the U.S. and festering worries over the euro zone.
Treasuries were boosted on Wednesday, as worries about the ramifications from a rescue deal for Cyprus and weak U.S. consumer sentiment data stirred some concern in markets.
Australian stocks led Asia higher on Wednesday after upbeat U.S. economic data provided temporary relief to the on-going euro zone worries while earnings momentum drove gains in greater China.
The euro hovered near a four-month low as mixed messages from European officials kept fears alive that Cyprus' decision to tax large bank depositors would set a bad precedent.
European shares were flat on Friday as talks over the "fiscal cliff" stalled.
European shares closed lower on Wednesday for a third consecutive session, with resurging worries about the global economic outlook undermining investor sentiment.
Standard & Poor's decision to cut Spain's credit rating to one notch above junk status is weighing on markets.
Asian shares dipped on Tuesday following losses on Wall Street after U.S. manufacturing activity hit a three-year low in November.
As the Chinese boom slows Hermes, Remy and other posh names are still going full throttle in Asia.
The worst US drought in over 50 years is pushing commodity prices to record highs.