Asian shares mixed amid uncertainties on Brexit, China trade

22-Oct-2019 Intellasia | AP | 6:02 AM Print This Post

Global shares are mostly higher after China’s top trade negotiator said over the weekend that Beijing and Washington were making progress in trade talks.

Britain’s FTSE 100 was flat at 7,164.64 amid uncertainties over the UK’s exit from the European Union.

France’s CAC 40 rose 0.3 percent in early trading to 5,651.10, while Germany’s DAX gained 0.8 percent to 12,732.62. US shares were set for gains with the Dow future contract up 0.2 percent at 26,801.00. S&P 500 futures added 0.3 percent to 2,995.80.

China’s state-run Xinhua News Agency reported that vice Premier Liu He told a conference in the southern city of Nanchang that the most recent trade talks with the US made “substantial progress.”

The negotiations were “building a foundation for signing a phased agreement,” it said.

President Donald Trump and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping agreed to hold off for now on imposing new tariffs while a deal is under discussion. Trump has said he hopes to sign a “Phase 1″ agreement with Xi when the two meet at a summit next month in Chile.

In Asian trading, Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 gained nearly 0.3 percent to finish at 22,548.90. South Korea’s Kospi picked up 0.2 percent to 2,064.84, while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng was nearly unchanged at 26,725.68. The S&P/ASX 200 in Australia inched up less than 0.1 percent to 6,652.50, while the Shanghai Composite also added less than 0.1 percent to 2,939.62.

Japan reported that its exports fell 5.2 percent from a year earlier in September while imports slipped 1.5 percent. The resulting deficit of 123 billion yen ($1.1 billion) reflected weak exports to China, South Korea and other Asian countries, customs data showed.

The data showed improvements in the semiconductor sector, suggesting a possible improvement in the slumping tech industry, economists said.

However, “repercussions from US-China trade tensions are likely to persist, and weak investment and consumer spending of the two major trading partners of Japan could continue to weigh on exports of ordinary machinery and autos, Japan’s major export products,” SungHa Park of IHS Markit said in a commentary.

Looking ahead, US investors are watching for more corporate earnings reports and awaiting data on housing and a report on durable goods orders due Thursday.

British prime minister Boris Johnson is expected to push for a vote on his European Union divorce deal as Parliament prepares for a week of guerrilla warfare over Brexit.

Johnson’s office said he plans to kick things off by asking for a “straight up-and-down vote” on the EU divorce agreement on Monday, two days after lawmakers voted to delay approving the deal.

ENERGY: Benchmark crude oil rose 18 cents to $53.96 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. It fell 15 cents to $53.78 a barrel on Friday. Brent crude oil, the international standard, picked up 4 cents to $59.46 a barrel.

CURRENCIES: The dollar rose to 108.62 Japanese yen from 108.38 yen on Friday. The euro slipped to $1.1173 from $1.1174.


Category: FinanceAsia

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