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By Shinichi Saoshiro TOKYO (Reuters) - Asian stocks fell sharply on Monday and the dollar stepped back from its recent highs as surprisingly weak Chinese trade data rattled investors already on edge over the crisis in Ukraine. European shares were seen opening largely flat with the poor Chinese data tempering optimism from a robust U.S. nonfarm payrolls report. Investors greeted the new week in Asia on a cautious note after data issued on Saturday showed China's exports unexpectedly tumbled in February, swinging the trade balance into deficit and adding to fears of a slowdown in the world's second-largest economy. The soft Chinese data put a damper on risk sentiment, which had been temporarily boosted by stronger-than-expected U.S. nonfarm payrolls out on Friday showing employers had added 175,000 jobs to their payrolls last month, up from 129,000 new positions in January.
EUREKA, Calif. - A powerful magnitude-6.9 earthquake struck Sunday night off the coast of Northern California, but there were no immediate reports of injury or damage and no danger of a tsunami, officials said. The temblor struck at 9:18 p.m. PDT and was centred 50 miles west of Eureka and about four miles beneath the Pacific seabed, according to the U.S. Geological Survey. There were no reports of any damages or injuries though the quake was felt widely and strongly, according sheriff's and fire officials in Humboldt County, which includes most of the populated areas near the epicenter. The National Tsunami Warning Center said there was no tsunami danger for the region.