×

GLOBAL MARKETS-Shares slip after Fed meeting, euro falls

* Wall St falls after end of two-day Fed policy-making meeting

* Euro edges lower after German data

* HSBC China manufacturing PMI hits 3-month high

NEW YORK, Oct 24 (Reuters) - Global shares fell on Wednesday after the Federal Reserve stuck to its plan to keep stimulating U.S. growth, while the euro slipped on signs that the euro zone is heading toward a deeper recession than previously feared.

Weak earnings outlooks and top-line revenue misses by large U.S. multinational companies have raised concerns about a slowing economy, which weighed on stocks.

The Fed repeated its vow to keep rates near zero until mid-2015 and its pledge to continue to support growth while the recovery strengthens in a statement at the end of a two-day meeting of the central bank's policy-makers.

The Fed's policy-setting panel made no change in its plan to purchase $40 billion in mortgage-backed debt per month to push interest rates lower and spur a stronger recovery.

``As expected, the Fed wants to stay out of the way of the election and be uninvolved in influencing it. This is what the market expected and it should have no lasting impact on the market,'' said Jim Awad, managing director at Zephyr Management in New York.

Data showed China's manufacturing sector shrank for the 12th consecutive month in October, although signs that the slowdown was easing provided temporary relief to a slumping market.

Three of the biggest U.S. weapons makers beat third-quarter earnings forecasts and raised their guidance for the full year, although the possibility of additional U.S. defense budget cuts continued to cloud the industry's outlook for 2013.

Lockheed Martin Corp, Boeing Co's defense division and Northrop Grumman Corp reported higher earnings and strong margins despite weakening sales, driving their shares higher on the New York Stock Exchange.

But corporate results were not so strong elsewhere, and the tone of U.S. management has rattled investors, said Steven Bulko, chief investment officer of Lombard Odier Asset Management, in New York.

``It was anticipated that earnings wouldn't be all that good, but the tone is catching people off guard,'' Bulko said. ``A lot of companies are saying they exited the quarter weaker than where they entered.''.

Boeing fell 0.3 percent to $72.59, Lockheed rose 2.1 percent to $93.91 and Northrop fell 0.8 percent to $69.07.

The euro fell against the dollar and yen on unexpectedly weak German data. But the euro's declines were limited after Greece's finance minister said Athens had been given additional time by international lenders to impose its austerity cuts, an assertion played down by leading EU officials.

The euro hit a session low of $1.2918, the lowest in a week, before paring losses to last trade at $1.2964, down 0.15 percent for the day.

Activity in Germany's manufacturing and service sectors declined for a sixth straight month in October as order books thinned, indicating Europe's largest economy has clearly stagnated in the second half of 2012.

European shares halted a three-day slide on Wednesday, with the pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 index closing up 0.5 percent after falling 1.7 percent on Tuesday. An index of world stocks was up 0.2 percent at 1,301.99.

Brent crude oil fell for a seventh consecutive session after U.S. crude stocks rose last week, offsetting earlier strength prompted by signs that Chinese demand could stage a recovery.

Brent crude for December delivery fell 40 cents to settle at $107.89 a barrel. U.S. December crude settled down 94 cents at $85.73 a barrel.

The benchmark 10-year U.S. Treasury note was down 4/32 in price to yield 1.773 percent.