World shares mixed as May seeks more time for Brexit deal

06-Apr-2019 Intellasia | AP | 6:00 AM Print This Post

World shares are mixed in Europe and mostly higher in Asia after President Donald Trump and a senior Chinese envoy said trade talks in Washington were making progress.

Britain’s FTSE 100 edged 0.1 percent higher to 7,408.92 after prime minister Theresa May requested a further Brexit extension from the European Union until June 30 to give the UK breathing room since it is now scheduled to leave the bloc in just one week.

European Council President Donald Tusk proposed a longer time frame, urging the 27 other EU nations to offer the UK a flexible extension of up to a year to make sure the nation doesn’t crash out of the bloc in a chaotic and costly way.

The CAC 40 in France gained 0.1 percent to 5,468.77 while Germany’s DAX slipped 0.1 percent to 11,975.93.

Wall Street looked set for gains, with the future contract for the Dow Jones Industrial Average added 0.1 percent to 26,425.00 while that for the S&P 500 climbed 0.2 percent to 2,886.90.

Investors are also keeping a close watch on the latest rounds of US-China trade negotiations. President Donald Trump said Thursday that the two sides were “rounding the turn” in the talks, which resumed Wednesday in Washington.

No details were announced but Trump said after meeting with Chinese vice Premier Liu He that “something monumental” could be announced within weeks.

Liu, China’s top trade negotiator, told Trump that “because of your direct involvement, we do have great progress.”

The dispute over technology policy, involving punitive tariffs imposed by both sides, has rattled markets and cast a pall over the outlook for the global economy.

Chinese markets were closed Friday for holidays, while Japan’s Nikkei 225 index added 0.4 percent to 21,807.50. The Kospi in South Korea edged 0.1 percent higher to 2,209.61. The S&P ASX in Australia dropped 0.8 percent to 6,181.30, while India’s Sensex rose 0.2 percent to 38,773.02. Shares fell in New Zealand and Indonesia but rose in Singapore and Malaysia.

Markets have been wobbly throughout the week as investors wait for the US government’s jobs report on Friday and prepare for a new round of corporate earnings reports next week.

SAMSUNG PROFIT PLUNGES: Samsung Electronics Co. said Friday that its operating profit likely fell more than 60 percent in January-March from a year earlier amid falling memory chip prices and slowing demand for display panels. The South Korean technology giant estimated an operating profit of 6.2 trillion won ($5.4 billion) for the January-March quarter, which would represent a 60.4 percent drop from the same period last year. The company said revenue likely fell 14 percent to 52 trillion won ($45.8 billion).

CURRENCIES: The dollar rose to 111.71 Japanese yen from 111.66 yen. The euro rose to $1.1233 from $1.1221.

ENERGY: Benchmark US crude rose 4 cents to $62.14 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. It dropped 0.6 percent to settle at $62.10 a barrel on Thursday. Brent crude, used to price international oils, shed 9 cents to $69.31 per barrel.


Category: FinanceAsia

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