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World Stocks Lower Wednesday After Tuesday's Rout


Asian stocks are lower in early trading Wednesday but not as sharply as Tuesday's massive sell-off that spread to other major world markets - amid fears of an economic slowdown in China and the United States.

China's benchmark Shanghai Composite Index is little changed in early trading, after falling nearly nine percent on Tuesday in its largest plunge in 10 years.

Japan's benchmark Nikkei, as well as markets in Hong Kong, Australia, and New Zealand are down about three percent in Wednesday trading. Stocks are down about six percent in the Philippines.

Latin American and European markets also were hit hard Tuesday.

The three major U-S stock indexes - the Dow Jones Industrial Average, the broader S&P-500 Index and the technology-heavy Nasdaq Composite Index - fell between three and four percent Tuesday, wiping out all of the gains each index made so far this year.

Investors' dwindling confidence was knocked down further by a Commerce Department report that said orders for durable goods in January dropped by the largest amount in three months.

And on Monday, former Federal Reserve Board chairman Alan Greenspan said the U.S. economy could fall into recession by the end of this year.

Some information for this report was provided by Bloomberg.