World markets respond to US credit downgrade

Today is the first day that most stock exchanges have been open since ratings agency Standard & Poor's announced its US credit downgrade from a AAA rating to AA+. Here’s how world markets have responded so far:

By , Staff writer

Japan

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    A TV cameraman zooms in on the Nikkei index displayed on an electric stock board in Tokyo on Friday, Aug. 5.
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Japan’s Nikkei index closed Monday down 2.2 percent to 9,097.56 – its weakest level since the days following March’s earthquake and tsunami, The Wall Street Journal reports. It's now off 16.5 percent from a pre-earthquake high on Feb. 11.

Asian government officials began the day there by trying to reassure investors that problems in the US shouldn’t prompt a market panic, the Journal reports. Japanese Finance Minister Yoshihiko Noda said "our confidence in US Treasury isn't shaken and we still see it as an attractive instrument."

Today’s drop wasn’t as severe as the 3.7 drop on Friday, Aug. 5. That drop was a reaction to the huge decline in US stocks on Aug. 4, CNN Money reports.

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