By Rodrigo Campos
NEW YORK (Reuters) - A measure of stocks around the world slipped after setting a 5-year high on Thursday, while the U.S. dollar strengthened in the wake of better-than-expected U.S. job market data.
Investors took profits in major global equity markets, but relatively upbeat economic data and ongoing support from central banks kept equities near multi-year highs.
U.S. stocks were mostly lower despite data showing claims for unemployment insurance fell to a five-year low in the latest week, with Wall Street coming off a sustained rally that has taken the S&P 500 to record closing highs for five straight sessions.
Pull-backs have been short and shallow despite recurring calls for a correction in U.S. equities. Globally, the expectation of continued accommodative monetary policy from central banks has maintained support for stocks.
Britain's central bank bucked a recent trend and held off easing its policy any further after a string of improving economic numbers pointed to a pick-up in growth during the second quarter.
"We've had such a consistent upward move that investors need some real new news to keep the momentum going," said Rick Meckler, president of hedge fund LibertyView Capital Management LLC in Jersey City, New Jersey.
"The jobless claims were a good number but not enough of a new news. Investors want to see really something that shows a good pick-up in the economic activity."
In late morning trading in new York, the Dow Jones industrial average (.DJI) was down 4.87 points, or 0.03 percent, at 15,100.25. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index was down 3.24 points, or 0.20 percent, at 1,629.45. The Nasdaq Composite Index was up 1.53 points, or 0.04 percent, at 3,414.79.
Europe's broad FTSEurofirst 300 index hovered near a five-year high. Germany's DAX and Britain's FTSE 100 were slightly higher.
The MSCI world index, which tracks stocks in 45 countries, was down 0.4 percent after earlier hitting its highest level since June 2008.
GREENBACK UP ON DATA
The U.S. dollar strengthened against the euro and yen as demand for the American currency increased broadly in the wake of the better-than-expected initial jobless claims.
Against the yen, the dollar turned higher to touch the day's peak of 99.40 yen. It was last at 99.32 yen, up 0.3 percent on the day.
The euro hit session lows at $1.3085 after earlier hitting a high of $1.3177. It was recently down 0.4 percent at $1.3102.
The jobless claims data "will keep discussions of tapering asset purchases going inside the Federal Reserve, which should help the dollar at a time when other major central banks are actively weakening their currency through lower interest rates or currency intervention," said Kathy Lien, managing director, at BK Asset Management in New York.
The euro was also pressured by slightly softer-than-expected demand at a Spanish debt auction, while Spanish government bond yields rose on talk the country was planning another deal in the near future.
Oil prices dipped on a combination of weaker demand and rising supplies.
U.S. oil lost 82 cents to $95.80 while Brent crude fell 48 cents to $103.86 per barrel. The benchmark has slipped from a one-month high of $105.94 touched on Tuesday after Israeli air strikes on Syria over the weekend stoked supply fears.
"Oil supply is improving and demand growth is not as rapid as expected," said Abhishek Deshpande, oil analyst at French bank Natixis.
Saudi Arabia increased crude oil output by 160,000 barrels per day to 9.3 million bpd in April, industry sources said this week, adding to an already well-supplied global market.
"More Saudi oil puts a cap on oil prices," Deshpande said.
Spanish bond yields rose on speculation Madrid may be planning another bond sale after borrowing costs fell at Thursday's auction of just over 4.5 billion euros of new debt.
The country's 10-year bond yields were 7 basis points higher at 4.18 percent, having moved away from the 2-1/2 year lows of 3.95 percent touched last week when the ECB cut rates and said it would consider further policy easing.
The benchmark 10-year U.S. Treasury note yield was above 1.8 percent for the first time in almost a month.
Gold prices fell after the strong U.S. jobs data, with spot gold down 0.2 percent to $1,468.70. The metal gained 1.4 percent in the previous session, its biggest one-day rise in two weeks.
(Additional reporting by Angela Moon, Gertrude Chavez-Dreyfuss, Ellen Freilich and Christopher Johnson; Editing by Dan Grebler)