World share prices are mixed ahead of a meeting between Presidents Donald Trump and Xi Jinping at the Group of 20 summit this weekend.
World share prices are mixed ahead of a meeting between Presidents Donald Trump and Xi Jinping at the Group of 20 summit this weekend. The DAX in Germany fell 0.6 per cent to 11,235.69 and France’s CAC40 lost 0.5 per cent to 4,981.48. Britain’s FTSE 100 sank 0.8 per cent to 6,983.30. The outlook for US trading was clouded, with the future contract for the Dow Jones Industrial Average down 0.2 per cent at 25,337.00 and S&P 500 futures down 0.3 per cent at 2,735.20. Japan’s Nikkei 225 index climbed 0.4 per cent to 22,351.06 and the Hang Seng in Hong Kong added 0.2 per cent to 26,506.75.
The Shanghai Composite index jumped 0.8 per cent to 2,588.19, while India’s Sensex was flat at 36,153.04. South Korea’s Kospi fell 0.8 per cent to 2,096.86 while the S&P ASX/200 in Australia tumbled 1.6 per cent to 5,667.20 on heavy selling of financials and consumer goods companies. Shares rose in Taiwan and Singapore but fell in Indonesia. The working dinner meeting between Trump and Xi could bring a breakthrough in a bruising trade war that has the US and China imposing punitive tariffs on billions of dollars’ worth of each other’s exports.
Analysts are not optimistic about prospects for improvement a month before US tariffs on Chinese goods are due to ramp up. “As investors shift their attention to the upcoming G-20 Trump-Xi meeting this weekend, Trump has hinted that he is very close to ‘doing something with China’ on trade,” Mizuho Bank said in a market note. “Though a comprehensive agreement is still unlikely, agreeing on a framework for future talks together with a delay in implementation of a 25 per cent tariff hike on USD 200 billion of Chinese imports” would “constitute a good outcome.”
A measure of China’s factory activity slipped to its lowest level in more than two years in November, adding to pressure on Beijing amid the tariff battle with Trump. The China Federation of Logistics & Purchasing said Friday its monthly purchasing managers’ index declined to 50 from October’s 50.2 on a 100-point scale on which numbers above 50 indicate activity is increasing. It blamed weak domestic demand for the latest decline.
But investors often see such news as a signal more market-boosting stimulus may be coming. South Korea’s central bank lifted its benchmark rate by a quarter of a per cent to 1.75 per cent despite a sluggish job market and tepid growth. The Bank of Korea’s governor, Lee Ju-yeol, said the rate increase would help stabilise financial markets amid government efforts to contain surging housing prices in capital Seoul and rising consumer debt levels. Benchmark US crude lost 22 cents to USD 51.23 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange.
It rose 2.3 per cent to finish at USD 51.45 a barrel on Thursday. Brent crude gave up 8 cents to USD 59.83 per barrel. It edged up 1.3 per cent to USD 59.51 a barrel in London. The dollar slid to 113.45 yen from 113.48 yen on Thursday. The euro slipped to USD 1.1373 from USD 1.1391.