Monday, July 22, 2024

Asian shares drop as US markets remain closed, European shares rise

Asian Shares Mostly Lower on Solid Gains in Europe, U.S. Markets Closed for July 4th Holiday

Asian Shares Mostly Lower as U.S. Markets Closed for Holiday

BANGKOK – Asian shares were mostly lower on Friday following solid gains in Europe overnight, while U.S. markets were closed for the July 4th holiday.

Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 reached over 41,000 early Friday but then retreated from Thursday’s record close of 40,913.65. U.S. futures saw a slight increase as oil prices fell.

Investors are eagerly awaiting the U.S. government’s comprehensive update on how many workers employers added to their payrolls during June. This data is crucial as it could indicate whether the economy is slowing enough to control inflation without tipping into a recession. The possibility of the Federal Reserve cutting interest rates, which have been at a two-decade high, is also being closely monitored.

The upcoming June jobs report is expected to show that employers added 190,000 jobs, a solid gain but lower than the 272,000 jobs added in May. Anderson Alves of Activ Trades noted, “The upcoming June jobs report will play a crucial role in shaping expectations for near-term Federal Reserve rate cuts.”

In Asian trading on Friday, the Nikkei 225 edged 0.2% lower to 40,843.90 after the government reported that higher prices had a bigger impact on consumer sentiment than expected in May, with household spending declining 1.8%.

Chinese markets were notably weaker, with Hong Kong’s Hang Seng down 1.1% and the Shanghai Composite index falling 0.9%. The Shanghai benchmark has been trading near its lowest levels since February.

However, the Kospi in Seoul saw a jump of 1.3% after Samsung Electronics forecasted that its operating profit in the second quarter would increase more than 15 times from a year earlier to 10.4 trillion won ($7.52 billion).

Elsewhere in the region, Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 slipped 0.2% and Taiwan’s Taiex edged 0.1% higher. The SET in Bangkok was up 0.2%.

With U.S. markets closed on Thursday, attention shifted to Britain, where the FTSE 100 was up 0.2% early Friday. Exit polls and partial returns indicated that Britain’s Labour Party was on track for a landslide victory in a parliamentary election.

The British pound rose to $1.2773 from $1.2760 late Thursday, while the euro also saw a slight increase.

On Thursday, the FTSE 100 advanced 0.9% and Germany’s DAX rose 0.4%. In Paris, the CAC 40 gained 0.8%.

In oil trading on Friday, U.S. benchmark crude oil lost 17 cents to $83.71 per barrel, while Brent crude, the international standard, declined 32 cents to $87.11 per barrel.

As investors eagerly anticipate the U.S. jobs report and assess the global economic landscape, market movements in Asia remain mixed with various factors influencing trading sentiment.

Related Articles

Latest Articles

Most Popular