$2 tln U.S. stimulus fails to lift global stocks

The U.S. finally has a stimulus plan in place.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell hailed the deal:

(SOUNDBITE) (English) U.S. SENATE MAJORITY LEADER, MITCH MCCONNELL, SAYING:"I'm proud to announce tonight not a single senator voted against this two trillion dollar rescue bill to save American individuals, small businesses, larger businesses."

But even the prospect of two trillion dollars didn't do much for stocks on Thursday (March 26).

Indexes in Japan, China and South Korea all closed lower.

Some of that was down to profit taking after strong gains in recent days.

But local concerns bubbled up too.

Japan faces growing fears of a lockdown as cases there rise rapidly.

And China saw an upsurge in imported cases of coronavirus, raising fears of a resurgence there.

Shanghai's composite index closed 0.6% lower.

It was a similar story from the open in Europe, where benchmark indexes all slid.

Worries over Thursday's U.S. jobless claims numbers one negative there.

Some economists predict they could jump by as much as ten million, stoking recession fears.

After posting its biggest two-day percentage gain ever, London's FTSE index fell 3% from the open.

Energy and resources stocks were among the hardest hit by global slowdown fears.

Miners BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto both lost close to 5% in early trade.

Anxiety was evident on foreign exchange markets too, where the dollar's recent rally lost more steam.

The greenback was down against a basket of major currencies in early European trade.