Asian Stocks Mixed; Euro Jumps, Oil Extends Slide: Markets Wrap
Asian stocks struggled for traction Monday with energy shares tumbling after oil extended its biggest drop in about a year. The euro rallied after Italy’s president rejected a candidate for finance minister who’s been skeptical of the single currency.
Benchmarks dipped in Tokyo, Shanghai and Australia. South Korean stocks rose, as did U.S. futures, after President Donald Trump appeared to confirm that his June summit with North Korea’s Kim Jong Un was back on. Hong Kong stocks were little changed. The MSCI Asia Pacific Energy Index had the biggest decline after a Saudi minister said petroleum supply would likely rise in the second half. Oil slid further below $70 a barrel in New York while the dollar slipped against most major peers.
Trading may be subdued round the world by U.S. and U.K. holidays Monday.
Investors turn their attention to the economy this week with readings on European inflation, Chinese manufacturing and Friday’s U.S. jobs report, the last before Federal Reserve policy makers meet in June. Italian assets will be in focus after that country sank deeper into political uncertainty, with populist leaders failing in their attempt to form a government.
“We may now be in for an extended period of heightened uncertainty ahead of fresh elections - assuming that’s where we’re headed - but that’s not a story for today,” said Ray Attrill, head of foreign-exchange strategy at National Australia Bank Ltd. in Sydney, referring to the euro’s advance on Monday. “For now it’s more relief that Italy will not - for now at least - have an avowed euro-skeptic finance minister.”
Terminal users can read more in Bloomberg’s Markets Live blog.
These are some key events to watch this week:
- U.S. markets are closed Monday for Memorial Day. U.K. markets are closed for the spring bank holiday.
- European Union foreign ministers meet in Brussels Monday to discuss developments related to North Korea, Yemen, and the Iran nuclear deal.
- EU trade chief Cecilia Malmstrom and U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross are scheduled to meet Wednesday in an informal World Trade Organization ministerial in Paris.
- U.S. employment report for May due Friday
- On Saturday U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross will travel to Beijing for more talks with Vice Premier Liu He on topics including ZTE Corp. and trade.
These are the main moves in markets:
- Topix index fell 0.2 percent as of 10:36 a.m. in Tokyo.
- S&P/ASX 200 Index fell 0.5 percent.
- Kospi index rose 0.7 percent.
- Hang Seng Index fell 0.2 percent. Shanghai Composite Index lost 0.5 percent.
- Futures on the S&P 500 advanced 0.4 percent.
- MSCI Asia Pacific Index fell 0.2 percent.
- The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index fell 0.2 percent.
- The Japanese yen was little changed at 109.46 per dollar.
- The euro jumped 0.5 percent to $1.1709.
- The yield on 10-year Treasuries was steady at 2.93 percent after falling five basis points Friday.
- West Texas Intermediate crude plunged 2.4 percent to $66.25 a barrel after tumbling 4 percent on Friday.
- Gold lost 0.3 percent to $1,297.87 an ounce.
— With assistance by Ruth Carson