Markets brush aside concerns over Greece debt standoff

AP News
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Posted: Feb 17, 2015 7:37 AM
Markets brush aside concerns over Greece debt standoff

BEIJING (AP) — Global stocks mostly rose on Tuesday as investors looked past a breakdown in Greece's debt talks and hoped a deal would eventually be reached to keep the country from falling out of the euro.

KEEPING SCORE: By early afternoon in Europe, France's CAC-40 was up 0.2 percent at 4,759.62 though Germany's DAX edged down 0.1 percent to 10,912.03. Britain's FTSE 100 rose 0.3 percent to 6,873.97. Wall Street looked set for a flat open after a three-day holiday weekend. Dow and S&P 500 futures were unchanged. On Friday, the S&P closed at a record high.

GREEK JITTERS: Greece's European creditors told it to ask for an extension to its existing bailout program before further talks on its financing can take place. After five years of punishing austerity, Greece wants to scrap its existing program in favor of a new one with easier terms. If no agreement is reached by the end of the month, financial markets think Greece might have little option but to default and stop using the euro currency. Most analysts expect a deal will be reached in time despite the tough talk. The Athens stock index was flat.

THE QUOTE: "It remains our central view that an eleventh hour compromise between Greece and its creditors is still likely," said Jane Foley, analyst at Rabobank International.

ASIA'S DAY: The Shanghai Composite Index rose 0.8 percent to 3,246.91 and Hong Kong's Hang Seng was up 0.2 percent at 24,784.88. Tokyo's Nikkei 225 shed 0.1 percent to 17,987.09 while Sydney and Singapore fell. Seoul's Kospi added 0.2 percent to 1,961.45 and Manila also rose. Indian markets were closed for a holiday.

ENERGY: U.S. benchmark crude was up 35 cents to $53.13 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. In the previous session, the contract gained $1.57 to close at $52.78.

CURRENCIES: The dollar rose to 118.79 yen from 118.27 yen on Monday. The euro rose to $1.1423 from $1.1335.