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Asia stocks on Friday as US political turmoil takes tax



Asian stocks fell on Friday as traders weighed in data showing slower economic growth in the US, as well as the possible impact of President Donald Trump's impeachment investigation.

The Trump congressional inquiry casts more volatility on a market already nervous about US-Chinese trade tensions.

"Trump's impeachment will now turn into a withdrawn saga that feels like annoying supermarket music," Jeffrey Halley of Oanda says in a report.

Also Thursday, the Commerce Department reports the US economy grew by a modest 2% in the second quarter, sharply lower than growth rates by 3% – suggesting growth last year.

SHCOMP, + 0.11%

leveled off on the last day of trading before the Chinese markets closed for a one-week break.

China's industrial profits fell 2% in August from a year earlier, after rising 2.6% in July, the National Bureau of China announced on Friday. Breaks from last month's strong storms also contributed to this, according to a statement by bureau economist Jo Hong. For the first eight months, industrial profits fell 1.7% a year, the Bureau reported.

Producer prices in China fell further in deflation last month, amassing pressure on manufacturers fighting a protracted Chinese-US trade war, official figures show earlier. Meanwhile, value-added industrial production has grown at the slowest pace for more than a decade, underlining the slow demand and soft confidence of the business, the Bureau said.

Nikkei 225 from Tokyo

NIK, -0.77%

lost 1.3% as a year-long hike from the October 1 sales tax on Japan to 10% of the current 8%.

Many stocks in Nikkei also raised a dividend on Friday, which is a big part of the index's fall, according to analysts. Kansai Electric Power

9503, -3,98%

and Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group

SMFG, -0.14%

fell while Japan's display

6740, -10.45%

slipped after saying a key investor wants to withdraw from the bailout plan.

The Hang Seng in Hong Kong

HSI, -0.32%

threw 0.3%, while the Seoul Caspian

180721, -1.19%

decline 1.3%, attracted by shares of large cap technologies. Despite renewed hopes of a US-China trade deal, US political uncertainty stemming from an impeachment investigation against President Trump is weighing on investor sentiment, which could spur recent profits, analyst KB Securities said.

Sydney S & P-ASX 200

XJO, + 0.58%

gained 0.4%.

Traders were encouraged by a message from the Chinese Ministry of Commerce that importers have agreed to buy US soybeans, as the two parties make conciliatory gestures ahead of trade talks. This followed an earlier decision to list penalties for soybeans, the largest Chinese import from the United States.

Plans to continue negotiations next month have helped ease market fluctuations, but there is no sign of progress in resolving the blighted tariff war on trade and technology.

On Wall Street, the Standard & Poor's 500 index

SPX, -0.24%

fell 0.2% to 2,977.62, and the Dow Jones Industrial Average

DJIA, -0.30%

slid 0.3% to 26,891.12. The Nasdaq

COMP, -0,58%

decreased by 0.6% to 8,030.66.

While many analysts argue that the Trump probe is unlikely to have a significant impact on the market, but it does add some degree of uncertainty and may complicate the White House's efforts to resolve trade disputes with China and other nations.

Benchmark crude oil in the United States

CLX19, -0,25%

lost 31 cents to $ 56.11 a barrel in e-commerce on the New York Stock Exchange. The deal dropped 8 cents to $ 56.41 on Thursday. Brent is harsh

BRNZ19, -0.49% ,

used for international oil prices, they fell 60 cents to $ 61.18 a barrel in London. It gave up 31 cents the previous session to $ 61.74.

The dollar

USDJPY, + 0.01%

decreased to 107.67 yen from 107.83 yen on Thursday. The euro

EURUSD, -0.0366%

increased to $ 1.0922 from $ 1.0920.

This story was compiled by reports from the Dow Jones Newswires and the Associated Press.


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