Asian indexes little changed as Belgian attacks worries ease

AP News
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Posted: Mar 22, 2016 11:35 PM
Asian indexes little changed as Belgian attacks worries ease

TOKYO (AP) — Asian stock indexes were little changed Wednesday, but mostly lower, as worries gradually settled over the deadly bombings in Belgium.

KEEPING SCORE: Japan's benchmark Nikkei 225 inched down less than 0.1 percent in morning trading to 17,041.82. South Korea's Kospi was also down less than 0.1 percent at 1,995.24. Hong Kong's Hang Seng fell 0.1 percent to 20,637.70, while the Shanghai Composite gained nearly 0.2 percent to 3,004.35. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 was down 0.5 percent at 5,141.60.

ATTACK WOES: News of the attacks in Belgium, which killed at least 31 people, had pulled global markets lower, and airlines and travel companies continued to slip in Asia. Major Japanese carrier ANA fell 0.5 percent, while Australia's flagship carrier Qantas Airways was down nearly 0.3 percent. HIS Co., a major Japanese travel company, slipped 2.3 percent.

WALL STREET: The Dow Jones industrial average lost 41.30 points, or 0.2 percent, to 17,582.57. The Standard & Poor's 500 index dipped 1.80 points, or 0.1 percent, to 2,049.80. The Nasdaq composite added 12.79 points, or 0.3 percent, to 4,821.66.

THE QUOTE: "The Brussels explosions gave the market a shock yesterday," said Margaret Yang Yan, market analyst at CMC Markets Singapore. "This attack, together with a series of terrorist attacks believed to have been perpetrated by ISIS since last year, will have an impact on investors' confidence."

ENRGY: U.S. crude slipped 43 cents to $41.02 a barrel in New York. Brent crude, the benchmark for international oils, fell 41 cents to $41.38 a barrel in London.

CURRENCIES: The euro rose slightly to $1.1215 from $ $1.1200, while the dollar rose to 112.28 yen from 111.65 yen.

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AP Business Writer Alex Veiga contributed to this report.

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