China’s stock benchmark rose Monday while ones in Japan and Europe fell as investors looked ahead to Apple results and this week’s U.S. Federal Reserve meeting.
KEEPING SCORE: In early trading, France’s CAC-40 index tumbled 1.1 percent to 5,144.97 points and Germany’s DAX shed 0.3 percent to 11,779.98. On Wall Street, futures were mixed with the Dow Jones industrial average down 0.03 percent and the Standard & Poor’s up 0.04 percent. On Friday, the Dow rose 0.1 percent and the S&P 500 rose 0.2 percent. The Nasdaq composite, dominated by tech stocks, advanced 0.7 percent.
ASIA’S DAY: The Shanghai Composite Index rose 3 percent to 4,527.40 points and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng was up 1.3 percent at 28,433.59. Sydney’s S&P-ASX 200 added 0.8 percent to 5,982.70. Tokyo’s Nikkei shed 0.2 percent to 19,983.32 and Seoul’s Kospi declined 0.1 percent to 2,157.54. India’s Sensex fell 0.6 percent to 27,259.46.
U.S. ECONOMY: Investors were looking ahead to Wednesday’s meeting of the Fed board amid concern that data this week will show the U.S. economy weakened in the first quarter. The Fed has no plans to update forecasts. Still, the meeting “will be closely watched to see if markets had been too eager to push out Fed hike expectations, especially now that oil prices have pushed above $55/barrel,” DBS said in a report.
EYES ON APPLE: Investors looked ahead to Apple Inc.’s quarterly results, due out after U.S. markets close Monday. The world’s most valuable company by market capitalization will be among 150 market-moving names in the S&P 500, also including Ford, Visa, Pfizer and Exxon Mobil, that report earnings this week. Apple, though still driven largely by iPhone sales, is being closely watched for signs of how its new Apple Watches are doing with customers.
GREECE: Greece’s European creditors are trying to discourage talk that they are making plans for Athens to leave the shared euro currency after a meeting Friday failed to produce agreement on economic reforms in exchange for financial help. Greece’s Yanis Varoufakis was rebuked for failing to come up with a list of reforms. The eurozone’s top official, Jeroen Dijsselbloem, said he hoped “some extra urgency” will be injected into the process following the meeting in Riga, the Latvian capital, of 19 finance ministers. Greece is forecast to have enough money for its government to pay its bills for another few weeks.
ENERGY: Benchmark U.S. crude declined 11 cents to $57.04 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract shed 49 cents to close at $57.15 in the previous session. Brent crude, used to price international oils, shed 1 cent to $65.27 in London after gaining 43 cents the previous day to close at $65.28.
CURRENCY: The dollar rose to 119.2130 yen from Friday’s 118.9580. The euro declined to $1.0846 from the previous session’s $1.087.
Source: Associated Press (AP)