Stocks in the United States have fallen, led by declines in financial shares, as reports on the European banking system renewed worries over the sector's health.
The Dow Jones Index on Tuesday was down 77 points to 10,371.
The Nasdaq Composite shed 17 points and was trading at 2217.
European shares fell, ending a two-week rally. Miners dropped on renewed jitters that a mining tax in Australia will go ahead.
The DAX in Frankfurt fell 0.6% to close at 6118 and the CAC-40 in Paris shed more than 1% to close at 3644.
Earlier, the Nikkei index in Tokyo ended on 9,226, down 75 points. The Hang Seng index in Hong Kong finished at 21,401, up 46 points.
Across the Tasman, the Australian 200 Index lost two points to finish at 4573.
The NZX 50 closed on Tuesday 31 points higher, at 3174 on turnover of $72 million.
At 6.25am on Wednesday, the New Zealand dollar was trading at 72.13 US cents, 79.01 Australian cents, 47.02 pence, 60.44 yen and 0.5677 euro. The Trade Weighted Index was at 67.21
Brent crude oil was trading at $US76.42 per barrel and gold was trading at $US1257.45 per ounce.