Asian shares mostly lower despite USA markets rally

29 October, 2018, 06:33 | Author: Mary Valdez
  • Futures Slump on Global Riskoff Sentiment; Caterpillar Weighs

October is typically a bumpy month for the markets, but the declines have made for one of the worst months in several years.

United States stocks finished a punishing session sharply lower on Wednesday (Oct 24), with major indices sinking more than two percent and the Dow and S&P 500 tumbling and wiping out all the 2018 gains. The average was briefly down 539 points.

The Nasdaq composite, with its hefty roster of tech stocks, has now fallen more than 10 per cent below its August peak in what Wall Street calls a "correction". Hong Kong's Hang Seng, affected by declines in semiconductor-makers and other tech shares, fell almost 2.5 percent before ultimately recovering and closing down 1 percent.

Stocks are off to a mixed start on Wall Street as gains for Boeing and other industrial companies are offset by losses elsewhere in the market.

Traders are anxious that rising interest rates and the escalating U.S.

Volatility in US markets has weighed on Asia for some time as trade tensions between the USA and China heighten. The indexes were pulled down by Amazon, Facebook and Netflix, all of which lost more than 5 percentage points in value, while Google-parent Alphabet plummeted 4.8 percent.

The Dow was up 471 points, or 1.9 percent, to 25,050.

Texas Instruments fell 8.2 percent to $92.01 after the chipmaker delivered quarterly results that fell short of Wall Street's forecasts, noting that demand across most markets is slowing. Intel, due to report earnings later this week, fell 4.7 percent.

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AP reported that more than 100 S&P 500 companies are expected to report strong third quarter results this week, and every sector except communications services is expected to show growth.

The Nasdaq added 245 points, or 3.5 percent, to 7,354. Recent data showing the housing market is slowing have also fueled speculation that US economic growth will start to slow next year.

Adding to weaker sentiment in late trading, the Federal Reserve said in a report on the economy that USA factories have raised prices because of tariffs.

The Dow is down 135.80 points, or 0.5 per cent. Brent crude, the benchmark for worldwide oil prices, rose 0.9 percent to $76.89 a barrel in London.

The results, along with gains for chipmakers, lifted technology stocks up 2.32 percent today.

That reignited worries over the impact of rising borrowing costs, wages and tariffs on corporate profits and caused S&P industrial stocks to slide 2.24 percent.

The dollar climbed to 112.59 yen from 112.44 yen. Silver fell 0.3 percent to $14.63 an ounce.

Market participants say a healthy level of hedging activity going into the sell-off and the recent upward bid for Treasury prices explains the volatility index's relative calm. A correction is when shares drop at least 10 percent from their recent highs. Also in Hong Kong, airline Cathay Pacific's shares dropped as much as 6.5 per cent but ended 3.8 per cent lower after it said it had discovered a data breach affecting 9.4 million passengers. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 was flat.



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