U.S. stocks halted a two-day rally as renewed declines in the price of crude set the tone on global financial markets, dragging down currencies of resource exporters and stoking demand for havens from gold to Treasuries.

The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index followed European shares lower after American crude’s slide approached 5 percent, undoing part of a 21 percent surge in oil to end last week. Emerging-market shares headed for the biggest two-day gain since August on bets that central banks will step up stimulus. Yields on 10-year Treasury notes fell three basis points 2.02 percent. The Russian ruble slid against all of its 31 major counterparts, while gold futures jumped 1 percent.

The S&P 500 fell 0.6 percent at 12:30 p.m. in New York, after a 2 percent rally on Friday. Equities are on track for their worst January since 2009 amid worries that China’s slowdown will weigh on global growth, with plunging oil prices exacerbating those concerns. The S&P 500 sank to a 21-month low last week before rallying.

Halliburton Co. declined Monday after posting a quarterly loss, and Exxon Mobil Corp. slide following crude’s biggest two-day rally in more than seven years. McDonald’s Corp. gained after the fast-food giant’s earnings beat analysts’ forecasts. Tyco International Plc surged 8.6 percent after Johnson Controls Inc. agreed to merge with the company.


Source : Bloomberg