European shares mixed after downbeat day in Asia

31-May-2018 Intellasia | AP | 6:00 AM Print This Post

European shares were mixed Wednesday following a downbeat day in Asia, as markets were rattled by Italy’s political turmoil and renewed trade friction between the US and China.

KEEPING SCORE: Germany’s DAX climbed 0.2 percent to 12,693.16 and the CAC 40 in France slipped 0.7 percent to 5,400.64. Britain’s FTSE 100 edged less than 0.1 percent lower to 7,626.59. S&P 500 futures climbed 0.2 percent and Dow futures also were up 0.2 percent, auguring early gains in New York.

ITALY: Italy’s premier-designate Carlo Cottarelli returned to the presidential palace for informal consultations early Wednesday amid continued market turmoil and uncertainty about the prospects of his proposed government. Milan’s stock index opened slightly higher, after markets were rattled Tuesday by concern that a new election could become a referendum on whether Italy will stick with the euro currency. A departure could have major implications for the European financial system and its economy.

CHINA TRADE: A US business group said American companies in China are uneasy about Washington’s threat of export and investment controls in a trade dispute with Beijing but see them as a possible way to achieve fairer operating conditions. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross was due in Beijing on Saturday after the White House renewed its threat of 25 percent tariffs on $50 billion of Chinese goods. Washington proposed curbs on Chinese investment and purchases of high-tech goods.

ASIA’S DAY: Japan’s Nikkei 225 stock index dropped 1.5 percent to 22,018.52. South Korea’s Kospi dropped 2.0 percent to 2,409.03. The Hang Seng in Hong Kong slipped 1.4 percent to 30,056.79 and the Shanghai Composite index fell 2.5 percent to 3,041.44. Australia’s S&P ASX 200 fell 0.5 percent to 5,984.70. Shares fell in Southeast Asia and Taiwan.

CURRENCIES: The dollar fell to 108.66 yen from 108.77 yen. The euro rebounded to $1.1608 from $1.1537.

TREASURIES: US government bond prices jumped Tuesday as investors moved money into lower-risk assets. The yield on the 10-year Treasury fell to 2.78 percent, its lowest since early April, from 2.93 percent. By early Wednesday in Europe, it was at 2.84 percent.

ENERGY: US crude oil climbed 6 cents to $66.79 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. It dropped 1.7 percent to $66.73 a barrel in New York. Oil prices had slumped in the last week following reports that OPEC countries and Russia could start pumping more oil soon. Brent crude, used to price international oils, added 1 cent to $75.50 a barrel in London.


Category: FinanceAsia

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