The euro fell against the US dollar as data showed a surprise deterioration in business morale in Germany.

That stoked fears of slowing global growth and weighed on a gauge of world equity markets.

US corporate earnings have been much better than expected and that's been driving the main markets to record highs.

However, the moves today were modest.

By noon on Wall Street, the Nasdaq was up 2 points (0.02%) to 8,123. The S&P500 was 2 points (0.06%) lower at 2,932. The Dow Jones was down 10 points (0.04%) at 26,646.

European markets were mixed at the close of business. London's FTSE was 51 points (0.7%) lower at 7,472. The DAX in Frankfurt made a gain of 78 points (0.6%) to finish the day at 12,313. The CAC in Paris shed 16 points (0.3%) to close at 5,576.

In Dublin, the ISEQ closed 45 points (0.7%) down at 6,448. Shares in Datalex closed lower once again - down 7 cent (10.5%) to 60 cent per share. Glanbia shares shed 6% (€1.05) to €16.35 per share. Shares in food group, Aryzta, gained 5 cent (4%) to close at €1.27.

Earlier in Asian trade, Tokyo's Nikkei index fell 60 points (0.27%) to close at 22,200 while the Hang Seng index in Hong Kong lost 157 points (0.5%) to end at 29,806 as investors brushed off a record performance on Wall Street, with energy firms taking a hit from a drop in oil prices.