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US STOCKS FALL AFTER AMAZON DEAL NEWS

US stocks fell on Friday after Amazon.com’s announcement it would buy Whole Foods Market hit the shares of Wal-Mart and grocers, while disappointing US economic data hurt the dollar and US Treasury yields. Amazon.com Inc said on Friday it would buy Whole Foods Market Inc for $13.7 billion.

The S&P 500 consumer staples index, down 1.6 percent, was the biggest drag on the benchmark S&P 500 stock index. Bucking broader declines on news of the deal, Amazon shares surged 3 percent while Whole Foods shot up 27.2 percent.

Indeed, the deal sent shockwaves through the food distribution market, hurting stocks like Wal-Mart, which slid 5.3 percent, Kroger, which tumbled 13.1 percent, and Costco Wholesale, which fell 6.1 percent.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 2.73 points, or 0.01 percent, to 21,357.17, the S&P 500 lost 3.94 points, or 0.16 percent, to 2,428.52 and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 20.63 points, or 0.33 percent, to 6,144.87.

MSCI’s index of stock markets across the world inched up 0.2 percent, while European shares added 0.5 percent, rebounding from recent losses.

In the foreign exchange market, the US dollar fell against a basket of key currencies; it was down 0.3 percent after the day’s data, which raised concerns about spending.

EUROPEAN SHARE MARKETS REBOUND

Europe’s main stock markets rebounded at the start of trading on Friday, with London’s benchmark FTSE 100 index up 0.3 percent at 7,439.49 points.

In the eurozone, Frankfurt’s DAX 30 index climbed 0.4 percent to 12,746.05 points, and the Paris CAC 40 gained 0.5 percent to 5,243.53 compared with the close on Thursday.

TOKYO STOCKS SOAR, TAKATA TRADING SUSPENDED

Tokyo stocks rose Friday, snapping a four-day losing streak, while trading in Takata was suspended on news the embattled airbag maker is headed for bankruptcy protection.

The yen remained under pressure against the dollar — a plus for exporters — after the Bank of Japan left its massive easing policy unchanged. The greenback fetched 111.17 yen, up from 110.93 yen in New York as the Fed’s move to raise interest rates this week further widened the gap between the Japanese and US central bank’s policy. A weaker yen inflates the profitability of Japan’s exporters.

Tokyo’s benchmark Nikkei 225 added 0.56 percent, or 111.44 points, to close at 19,943.26, although it slipped 0.35 percent over the week. The broader Topix index of all first-section issues gained 0.50 percent, or 7.95 points, to finish at 1,596.04. It advanced 0.28 percent over the week.

HONG KONG STOCKS CLOSE WEEK WITH GAINS

Hong Kong stocks ended the week with gains, recovering some ground Friday from the previous day’s sharp losses of more than one percent.

The Hang Seng Index added 0.24 percent, or 61.15 points, to close at 25,626.49. The benchmark Shanghai Composite Index lost 0.30 percent, or 9.32 points, to 3,123.17 and the Shenzhen Composite Index, which tracks stocks on China’s second exchange, closed 0.20 percent lower, or 3.66 points, at 1,866.05.

 

SE ASIA SHARE-END LOWER ON HAWKISH FED OUTCOME

Southeast Asian markets ended lower on Thursday, hit by a hawkish Federal Reserve and weak oil prices, while Singapore shares extended their slide to post their lowest close in a week.

The Federal Reserve raised interest rates on Wednesday for the second time in three months, and said it would begin cutting its holdings of bonds and other securities this year. However, the Fed’s decision and confidence in continued US economic growth was overshadowed by surprisingly weak data released earlier in the day. US consumer prices unexpectedly fell on month in May and the annual increase in core CPI slipped to 1.7 percent, the smallest rise since May 2015, after advancing 1.9 percent in April.

Singapore shares posted their lowest close in one week, dragged down by the financial sector.

While Oversea-Chinese Banking Corp closed at 1-week closing low, index heavyweights United Overseas Bank Ltd closed 2.2 percent lower and DBS Group Holdings shed 0.9 percent. Indonesia shares retreated from their record closing high hit in the previous session to end 0.3 percent lower, with Astra International Tbk PT pulling down the index.

SRI LANKAN STOCKS CLIMB

Sri Lankan shares rose on Thursday to hit a near three-week closing high as heavyweights John Keells Holdings Plc and Commercial Bank of Ceylon Plc gained.

The Colombo stock index ended 0.4 percent higher at 6,694.64, its highest close since May 26. Foreign investors accounted for about 50 percent of the day’s turnover of 1.88 billion rupees ($12.3 million), more than double this year’s daily average of 899.4 million rupees.

Foreign investors, however, were net sellers of 55.6 million rupees worth of shares, snapping nine straight sessions of net buying. But they have been net buyers of 20.68 billion rupees worth of equities so far this year. Sri Lanka’s economy grew 3.8 percent in the first quarter, slowing down from the previous quarter’s 5.3 percent, the state-run Census and Statistics Department said on Thursday after the markets closed.

STEADY START EYED FOR TAIWAN SHARE MARKET

The Taiwan stock market headed south again on Wednesday, one session after it had halted the two-day slide in which it had surrendered more than 115 points or 1.1 percent. The Taiwan Stock Exchange now rests just above the 10,070-point plateau and the market is looking at a narrow trading range on Thursday. The global forecast for the Asian markets is mixed to lower following the FOMC rate decision and a tumble in the price of crude oil. The TSE finished modestly lower on Wednesday following losses from the financial shares and the technology stocks.

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