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US markets down as bank stocks, Syria conflict weigh

Financial stocks led a drop on Wall Street on Friday as results from big banks failed to enthuse and fear of broader conflict in Syria further unnerved investors. The S&P banks index fell 2.6 percent and the broader S&P financial index lost 1.6 percent, the most among the 11 major S&P sectors. Shares of JPMorgan Chase & Co, the biggest US bank by assets, dropped 2.7 percent after the bank’s quarterly profit fell slightly short of expectations. JPMorgan shares were the biggest weight on the S&P 500. Wells Fargo sank 3.4 percent after the bank said it may have to pay a penalty of $1 billion to resolve investigations, while Citigroup dropped 1.6 percent despite beating profit estimates.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 122.91 points, or 0.5 percent, to 24,360.14, the S&P 500 lost 7.69 points, or 0.29 percent, to 2,656.3 and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 33.60 points, or 0.47 percent, to 7,106.65. Still, for the week, the S&P 500 rose 1.99 percent, the Dow gained 1.79 percent, and the Nasdaq added 2.77 percent. The S&P banks index fell 2.6 percent and the broader S&P financial index lost 1.6 percent, the most among the 11 major S&P sectors. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 122.91 points, or 0.5 percent, to 24,360.14, the S&P 500 lost 7.69 points, or 0.29 percent, to 2,656.3 and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 33.60 points, or 0.47 percent, to 7,106.65. Still, for the week, the S&P 500 rose 1.99 percent, the Dow gained 1.79 percent, and the Nasdaq added 2.77 percent.

Boeing fell 2.4 percent after a Russian lawmaker said the country may stop supplying titanium to the company. Issues with engines for Boeing’s 787 Dreamliner planes also weighed on the company’s shares.

The top gainer among S&P sectors was energy, up 1.1 percent as oil prices rose. Tesla rose 2.1 percent after founder Elon Musk said the electric car maker would be profitable in the third and fourth quarters and would not need to raise any money this year.

Declining issues outnumbered advancing ones on the NYSE by a 1.28-to-1 ratio; on Nasdaq, a 1.64-to-1 ratio favored decliners. Volume on U.S. exchanges was 5.78 billion shares, compared to the 7.22 billion average for the full session over the last 20 trading days.

Pakistan’s market keeps bearish trend

The stock market showed a bearish trend on Friday as selling pressure pushed the KSE-100 Index near the 46,000 level even as foreign institutional investors continued to remain net buyers.

At close, the benchmark KSE 100-share Index recorded a decrease of 259.85 points or 0.56% to settle at 46,071.86. Moreover, traded volumes plunged by 41% to 197 million shares, while the value of trade decreased to $76 million, Mullah added.

Top volume stocks were KEL (+0.71%), EPCL (-1.73%), FFL (+0.95%) and FCCL (-2.21%). Overall, trading volumes decreased to 197.4 million shares compared with Thursday’s tally of 333 million.

Shares of 367 companies were traded. At the end of the day, 132 stocks closed higher, 217 declined while 18 remained unchanged. The value of shares traded during the day was Rs8.8 billion. K-Electric Limited was the volume leader with 36.2 million shares, gaining Rs0.05 to close at Rs7.11. It was followed by Engro Polymer with 10.9 million shares, losing Rs0.69 to close at Rs39.22 and Fauji Food with 10.6 million shares, gaining Rs0.38 to close at Rs40.59.

Hong Kong stocks finish slightly down

Hong Kong stocks ended a volatile week with a small loss on Friday despite a broad Asian rally on easing fears of a China-US trade war.

The Hang Seng Index dipped 0.07 percent, or 22.90 points, to 30,808.38. The benchmark Shanghai Composite Index fell 0.66 percent, or 21.11 points, to 3,159.05, while the Shenzhen Composite Index, which tracks stocks on China’s second exchange, lost 0.32 percent, or 5.89 points, to 1,834.38.

 

Tokyo shares gain on ebbing Syria fears

Tokyo stocks rose moderately Friday, following rallies in New York on receding fears that the US would lead military strikes in response to an alleged chemical weapons attack in Syria.

The benchmark Nikkei 225 index gained 0.55 percent or 118.46 points to 21,778.74, marking a weekly increase of 0.98 percent. The broader Topix index was up 0.63 percent or 10.84 points at 1,729.36. Over the week, it rose 0.59 percent.

Singapore index declines

Shares in Singapore, among the more expensive markets in Asia and highly exposed to global trade, slipped on Thursday ahead of a policy decision by its central bank, while most other Southeast Asian stock markets reversed course to end higher.

The Singapore index fell 0.3 percent, as Oversea-Chinese Banking Corp Ltd closed 0.9 percent lower and Singapore Telecommunications Ltd lost 1.5 percent. Indonesian shares dropped, reversing three sessions of gains, with Telekomunikasi Indonesia slipping 3.1 percent and Astra International shedding 2.8 percent. Thai shares edged up, led by energy stocks, as global oil prices extended gains from the previous session.

Indian stocks extend gains for sixth day

Indian shares ended higher for a sixth straight session on Thursday, ahead of key retail inflation data later in the day, as a weakening rupee and expectations of positive quarterly results boosted information technology stocks.

The broader NSE index ended 0.4 percent higher at 10,458.65, while the benchmark BSE index closed 0.47 percent higher at 34,101.13. Infosys Ltd led the gains, closing 3.5 percent higher. The software services exporter will kick-start the January-March corporate results season on Friday.

Canadian stock index surges

Canada’s main stock index was higher on Thursday, helped by gains in financial stocks and a jump in Shaw Communications’ shares after the company posted a better than expected profit.

At 9:45 a.m. ET (1345 GMT), the Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX Composite Index was up 38.3 points, or 0.25 percent, at 15,296.2. Shaw Communications provided the biggest boost to the index with a 10 percent rise. The telecom services company beat second-quarter profit expectations as wireless subscribers more than doubled from a year ago. The financial sector, which makes up for more than a third of the index, rose 0.4 percent.

Russian shares and rouble edge higher

Russian stocks indexes and the rouble recovered slightly at the market opening on Thursday after suffering steep declines caused by new US sanctions.

The rouble started trading in Moscow on a weaker note on Thursday but soon reversed losses. The Russian currency was up 0.8 percent against the US dollar at 62.08 by 0715 GMT, having hit its weakest since 2016 at 65.06 the previous day. Versus the euro, the rouble gained 1 percent to 76.65 after briefly touching 80.50 on Wednesday, a level last seen in March 2016.

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