Global stock markets fluctuated on Tuesday as fears of a banking crisis ebbed after weeks of turmoil. European markets extended gains slightly, with London’s FTSE 100 closing 0.2 percent higher while Paris and Frankfurt added around 0.1 percent. Wall Street’s main indices and Asian equities were mixed, with the Dow rising near midday while the S&P 500 and tech-heavy Nasdaq fell. “Markets are uninspiring today because of the lack of fresh catalysts to encourage the bulls, following the recent financial-sector turbulence,” Fawad Razaqzada, analyst at City Index and Forex.com, told AFP. Most equity markets had advanced Monday as bank shares jumped after US lender First Citizens Bank bought most of rival Silicon Valley Bank (SVB), whose collapse triggered fears of a wider crisis in the financial system. The gains followed last week’s rout over concerns that the turmoil in the sector — which sparked the UBS takeover of Credit Suisse — could hit other major institutions, such as German giant Deutsche Bank. The rally was “a sign of gradually improving confidence following a relatively drama-free weekend,” said Craig Erlam, analyst at OANDA trading platform. “As we saw on Friday though, anxiety remains high and things quickly spiral in those circumstances so investors are likely to remain vigilant,” Erlam added. While markets have responded positively to the measures implemented by authorities to shore up the commercial banking sector, there are still concerns about the impact of ongoing rate hikes by central banks, especially the US Federal Reserve. Despite the recent turmoil, many central banks have pushed on with monetary tightening as they focus on fighting inflation. “The first quarter is coming to an end amid growing realization in the market that even if the economy avoids a full-fledged banking crisis, current financial conditions and tightening monetary policy aren’t conducive to a rally,” analysts at financial firm Charles Schwab said in a note. Bank of England governor Andrew Bailey, whose institution ramped up interest rates last week, sounded a note of caution over banking-sector upheaval. “We are very vigilant. We are in a period of tension, tightness and alertness,” he told a parliamentary committee on Tuesday. He added: “My very strong view about the UK banking system is that it is in a strong position, both capital and liquidity wise. It is not showing signs of problems in that respect and we have tested very extensively.” In a separate development on Tuesday, French authorities raided five banks as part of an investigation into suspected cases of massive tax fraud and money laundering.