A gauge of global stocks erased this week’s gains on Thursday after underwhelming manufacturing surveys from Asia and Europe and continued weakness in U.S. healthcare shares spurred profit-taking ahead of an extended Easter holiday weekend.
The MSCI All-Country World Index fell 0.3% to wipe out its advance earlier in the week, though it still traded near six-month highs.
On Wall Street, a sell-off in healthcare shares, which have been under pressure from Democratic proposals to extend Medicare coverage to more Americans, overshadowed strong March retail sales data showing the greatest increase in 1-1/2 years.
Lackluster French and German surveys of purchasing managers in the manufacturing sector for April, which showed activity continuing to contract, also prompted selling among some investors, said Darrell Cronk, chief investment officer for wealth and investment management at Wells Fargo in New York.
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