Global stocks mostly higher amid strong earnings, growth
By JOE McDONALD
Aug. 06, 2018
BEIJING (AP) — Global stock markets were mostly higher Monday as investors focused on strong company earnings and economic data even as the U.S.-China trade dispute heated up.
KEEPING SCORE: Germany's DAX rose 0.7 percent to 12,698 while London's FTSE 100 gained 0.1 percent to 7,666. France's CAC 40 rose 0.3 percent to 5,497. On Wall Street, futures for the Standard & Poor's 500 index and the Dow Jones industrial average were both up 0.1 percent.
ASIA'S DAY: The Shanghai Composite Index lost 1.3 percent to 2,705.16 and Tokyo's Nikkei 225 was off 18 points at 22,507.32. Hong Kong's Hang Seng added 0.5 percent to 27,819.56 and Seoul's Kospi was down 1 point at 2,286.50. Sydney's S&P-ASX 200 rose 0.6 percent to 6,273.00 and India's Sensex advanced 0.5 percent to 37,739.68.
GROWTH AND EARNINGS: The Labor Department said Friday that employers added fewer jobs in July than expected but more were added in May and June than previously reported. Overall, the report showed continued strong growth in the world's largest economy. Meanwhile, company earnings have been upbeat on average, particularly in the U.S., where a tax cut has helped some and the tariffs have not yet had a big effect on business. Berkshire Hathaway, the Warren Buffett conglomerate that invests in multiple industries, was the latest to provide stronger-than-expected figures.
TRADE WAR: The Chinese government issued a $60 billion list of U.S. goods late Friday, including semiconductors and industrial chemicals, targeted for retaliation if Washington goes ahead with its latest tariff threat. The Finance Ministry said the charges, ranging from 5 percent to 25 percent, will take effect if the Trump administration goes ahead with plans to impose 25 percent duties on $200 billion of Chinese goods. The two sides already have raised tariffs on billions of dollars of each other's goods in a dispute over Beijing's technology policy.
CHINA CURRENCY: Regulators tightened controls on trading in China's yuan in a possible effort to stop its decline against the dollar. Traders were ordered to post a 20 percent deposit for contracts to buy or sell yuan, which raises the cost of betting it will fall further. The yuan has drifted lower against the dollar since February, which could help exporters that face higher U.S. tariffs but also raises the risk of capital flowing out of the economy. The central bank "had been largely tolerant" of the yuan's decline, but the latest changes "may have gathered concerns including capital flight," said Jingyi Pan of IG in a report.
ENERGY: Benchmark U.S. crude gained 91 cents to $69.40 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract sank 47 cents on Friday to close at $68.49. Brent crude, used to price international oils, rose 68 cents to $73.89 in London. It lost 24 cents the previous session to $73.21.
CURRENCY: The pound was the big mover after the U.K.'s trade minister warned about a no-deal Brexit. The currency was down to $1.2932, from just over $1.3000 on Friday. The dollar rose to 111.47 yen from 111.26 yen and the euro edged down to $1.1534 from $1.1569.