Markets Right Now: Asian stocks mixed as focus turns to ECB

AP News
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Posted: Apr 19, 2016 11:07 PM
Markets Right Now: Asian stocks mixed as focus turns to ECB

NEW YORK (AP) — The Latest news on global financial markets (all times local):

12:00 a.m.

Asian stocks meandered Wednesday, though sentiment was lifted by Wall Street's strong day, as investor attention turned to upcoming remarks from a European Central Bank official.

Japan's benchmark Nikkei 225 edged up 0.5 percent in morning trading to 16,962.28. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 added 0.3 percent to 5,271.80. South Korea's Kospi gained 0.3 percent to 2,016.81. Hong Kong's Hang Seng fell 0.6 percent to 21,307.82, while the Shanghai Composite inched up nearly 0.1 percent to 3,044.98.

4:00 p.m.

Stocks are closing mostly higher on Wall Street as energy and mining companies gain.

Technology shares lagged the rest of the market Tuesday, pulling the Nasdaq composite index lower.

Rig operator Transocean jumped almost 10 percent, and mining giant Freeport-McMoRan climbed 9 percent.

The gains in energy and mining companies came as prices for oil, copper and other basic materials rose.

Crude oil gained 3 percent to $41 a barrel in New York.

Netflix sank 13 percent after giving a disappointing forecast for subscriber additions.

The Dow Jones industrial average gained 49 points, or 0.3 percent, to 18,053.

The Standard & Poor's 500 index added six points, or 0.3 percent, to 2,100. The Nasdaq edged down 19 points, or 0.4 percent, to 4,940.

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11:45 a.m.

U.S. stocks are mostly higher in midday trading on Wall Street as the price of crude oil climbs.

Rig operator Transocean jumped 11 percent and Diamond Offshore Drilling rose 6 percent Tuesday.

The price of U.S. benchmark crude oil rose 3.6 percent to $41 a barrel in New York. Natural gas futures soared 5 percent.

Technology stocks lagged the market. Netflix sank 11 percent after giving a disappointing forecast for subscriber additions.

The Dow Jones industrial average gained 57 points, or 0.3 percent, to 18,061.

The Standard & Poor's 500 index added six points, or 0.3 percent, to 2,100. The Nasdaq composite edged down 14 points, or 0.3 percent, to 4,945.

Bond prices fell. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note rose to 1.80 percent.

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9:35 a.m.

Energy stocks are among the gainers in early trading on Wall Street as the price of crude oil turns higher.

Chesapeake Energy jumped 5 percent and Southwestern Energy rose 4 percent in the first few minutes of trading Tuesday.

The price of U.S. benchmark crude oil rose 1 percent to $40 a barrel in New York. Natural gas futures soared 5 percent.

The Dow Jones industrial average gained 34 points, or 0.2 percent, to 18,039.

The Standard & Poor's 500 index added three points, or 0.2 percent, to 2,097. The Nasdaq composite edged down 11 points, or 0.2 percent, to 4,948.

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7:40 a.m.

Wall Street is set to track European and Asian markets higher when it opens.

Futures markets are pointing to 0.4 percent advance for both the Dow Jones industrial average and the broader S&P 500 index.

A number of factors have been behind Tuesday's gains, including strong German economic data and the recovery in the price of oil. But the mood in stock markets has seen a longer-term improvement, at least since late February.

Joshua Mahony, market analyst at IG, says sentiment in markets appears to be "bullish by default" and that as a result it seems like it will "take something hugely significant to knock the indices off their strides."

Big gainers on Tuesday include Germany's DAX, which is up 2.4 percent at 10,363, and Japan's Nikkei, which soared 3.7 percent to close at 16,874.44.

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5:10 a.m.

Germany's DAX stock index is outperforming its European peers after a better than expected survey of investment analysts suggested things may be looking up for Europe's largest economy.

The ZEW Institute said its indicator of economic sentiment rose in April to 11.2 points from the previous month's 4.3. The increase, the second in a row, was way more than anticipated in markets. The consensus was for a more modest rise to 8.2.

Though the survey had some more cautious elements, Spreadex analyst Connor Campbell said the headline number provided the "green light" for the DAX "to roar into life."

It's up 2.3 percent at 10,350. That's double the rate seen in most other European markets. The Stoxx 600 index of European shares is up 1.2 percent at 348.4.

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5:05 a.m.

The price of oil has recovered ground it lost since plunging early Monday, a sign possibly of greater investor confidence in the global economy.

In morning trading, the benchmark New York rate was 46 cents higher at $40.24 a barrel.

Oil has been one of the main drivers in financial markets this year, when it fell to 12-year lows amid concern about high supply and weakness in the global economy.

But following a precipitous decline early Monday, after oil-rich nations failed to agree to a production cut over the weekend, it has bounced higher.

That suggests that worries over the global outlook have eased somewhat, and that the supply glut may be easing.

For James Hughes, chief market analyst at GKFX, it's a sign that the oil market is "turning slightly to the upside" and that traders are willing to let crude trade at higher levels.

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4:10 a.m.

European stock markets are tracking their Asian counterparts higher as oil prices recouped losses they recorded in the wake of the failure of oil-rich nations to cap production.

Among Europe's main indexes, Germany's DAX was trading 1.3 percent higher at 10,253 while Britain's FTSE 100 rose 0.8 percent to 6,406.

The gains in Europe came after a strong session in Asia. Japan's Nikkei led the advance as it notched up a 3.7 percent to close at 16,874.44.

The improving sentiment in stock markets has been helped by the rally in oil prices following an initial decline of about 7 percent in the wake of Sunday's failure by oil-producing nations to announce a production cap. A barrel of benchmark New York crude was up 67 cents at $40.45.