Global shares and the euro eased and safe-haven German government bonds rose on Tuesday as demand for riskier assets stalled after ratings agency Moody's downgraded six European nations, taking the shine off the Bank of Japan's policy easing.
Japan's central bank surprised markets with a further loosening of monetary policy by increasing its asset buying and lending scheme. The move tallies with easing by other major central banks and this has encouraged investors to move into riskier assets like equities.
But the euro fell 0.3 percent to $1.3147 and the FTSEurofirst index of top European companies opened down 0.2 percent after Moody's said it may cut the AAA ratings of France, Britain and Austria, and downgraded Italy, Portugal, Spain, Slovakia, Slovenia and Malta.
Clearly this was not a game changer, but comes at a time when risk assets are in reflection mode after a strong run, Chris Weston, institutional trader at IG Markets, said.
Italian 10-year yields, which are a barometer for Europe's lower-rated sovereigns, rose slightly to 5.64 percent with investors eyeing the 25 billion euros of new euro zone supply this week, with Spain, France and Italy all looking to sell bonds.
German government bond futures were 39 ticks higher at 138.62 with 10-year yields 3.5 basis points lower at 1.899 percent.
(Additional reporting by Atul Prakash; editing by Anna Willard)