Stocks on Wall Street have fallen after US retail sales data for January was lower than expected.
The Dow Jones Index on Wednesday was down 61 points, or 0.5%, at 12,813.
The Nasdaq Composite was down 14 points, almost 0.5%, at 2917.
Stock markets on Europe fell after Moody's cut its ratings on six nations and placed three others on negative outlook due to the eurozone crisis.
The FTSE 100 in London fell 0.1%, the DAX in Frankfurt fell 0.1% and the CAC-40 in Paris fell 0.3%.
The Australian 200 Index fell 42 points, or 1%, to close at 4243 and the NZX 50 fell 10 points to finish at 3330.
At 8.25am on Wednesday, the New Zealand dollar was trading at 82.87 US cents, 77.82 Australian cents, 52.91 pence, 65.09 yen and 0.6329 euro. The Trade Weighted Index was at 73.23.
Brent crude oil was trading at $US119.12 per barrel and gold was trading at $US1721 per ounce.