U.S. stocks rallied in the latter part of the day as most investors sat on their hands ahead of the U.S. election. The S&P 500 gained 0.2% and the NASDAQ 0.6%.
- The Institute for Supply Management said its services index eased to 54.2 last month from 55.1 in September, shy of economists' forecasts for 54.5. This was the first drop since June. A reading above 50 indicates expansion in the sector.
- The new orders gauge fell to 54.8 from 57.7, but the measure of employment rose to its highest since March at 54.9 from 51.1.
Oil rose 79 cents to $85.65 a barrel. Gold added $8 to $1,683.20 an ounce while silver gained $0.27 to $31.13.
Britain's FTSE 100 and the DAX in Germany lost 0.5%, and France's CAC 40 dropped 1.26%.
The Shanghai Composite shed 0.1% while Japan's Nikkei fell 0.5%.
- China's services sector expansion lost momentum last month as well, with the HSBC Purchasing Managers Index slipping to 53.5 after hitting a four-month peak in September. New orders fell and firms said higher competition squeezed margins. Services account for just 43% of output, compared with well over 70% in Western countries.