Asian stocks collapsed on Friday as reports showed that cuts in US workers remained high after the US economy contracted at almost 33% year-on-year in the spring, the worst quarter in the record.
Profit reports ̵
Japan’s Nikkei 225 (JP: NIK) was down 2.3%, while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng (HK: HSI) was up 0.2%. The Shanghai Composite (CN: SHCOMP) was almost flat, while the Shenzhen Composite with a smaller cap (CN: 399106) gained 0.3%. South Korea’s Kospi (KR: 180721) was down 0.2%, Taiwan’s Taiex (TW: Y9999) was down 0.3% and Australia’s S&P / ASX 200 (AU: XJO) was down 1.6%. Markets in Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia were closed for the holidays.
August tends to be a disgusting month for stocks, said Stephen Ines of AxiTrader Corp.
“Stock markets seem extremely corrective to the extent that we could enter a withdrawal phase by the time we leave in August, most commonly called summer trouble,” Innes said in a comment.
In a positive signal, China reported its manufacturing activity intensified in July and export orders boosted despite weak US and European demand. The monthly survey, published on Friday, was another sign that the world’s second-largest economy is gradually recovering from the coronavirus pandemic.
Central bank meetings for different countries are on the agenda for next week.
“Second-quarter GDP for Indonesia and the Philippines will also be closely monitored, highlighting the impact of the pandemic,” said Bernard Au, chief economist at IHS Markit in Singapore.
The Japanese government said that by the end of Thursday, the country’s economy is likely to sink 4.5% for the fiscal year ending in March 2021. It forecasts a return on growth in the next fiscal year.
Among the Japanese companies reporting revenue next week are Sony Corp. (JP: 6758), Honda Motor Co. (JP: 7267), Toyota Motor Corp. (JP: 7203) and Nintendo Co. (JP: 7203).
Some companies behave better than others.
Japanese media report that Toyota is on track to become the world’s №1 carmaker again, ahead of Volkswagen, which is now the best carmaker in global car sales. Toyota’s sales are already recovering in markets such as China, which is recovering from its early COVID-19 outbreaks, according to the company.
Overnight, the United States reported that the economy contracted at a record 32.9% annual rate in April-June, when pandemic stops expanded.
The news of the deep and steep collapse came after the resumption of outbreaks caused businesses in many areas to close for the second time. The government’s estimate of the decline in gross domestic product in the second quarter is unparalleled, as records began in 1947. The previous worst quarterly contraction – by 10%, less than a third of what was reported on Thursday – occurred in 1958. during the Eisenhower administration,
The bad news was no big surprise and the Wall Street S&P 500 (SPX) fell 0.4% to 3,246.22. Almost three of the four shares in the index fell. Among those most affected were oil producers, banks and other companies most in need of the economy to escape the recession.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) lost 0.9% to 26,313.65.
Shares seemed poised for a much steeper decline earlier in the day, but stronger-than-expected gains from UPS and other companies helped the market cut losses. As well as the stable prices of Amazon and other large technology-oriented stocks, which reported their own results after the close of trading.
The anticipation of their reports, which turned out to be even better than Wall Street had expected, helped the Nasdaq Composite (COMP) completely erase its early losses and rise 0.4% to 10,587.81.
But overall, earnings reports are well below pre-pandemic levels a year ago. The big companies in the S&P 500 are about to report a nearly 38% drop in the second quarter from a year earlier, according to FactSet.
Shortly after trading for the day, Amazon (AMZN), Apple (AAPL), Facebook (FB) and parent company Alphabet (GOOGL) (GOOG) of Google reported higher profits for the last quarter than forecast by Wall Street. Investors continue to flock to them, expecting them to thrive as the pandemic accelerates the transition to online trading.
The US commodity benchmark (CLU20) earned 14 cents to $ 40.06 a barrel in e-commerce on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent crude (UK: BRNU20), the international standard, rose 37 cents to $ 43.31 a barrel.
The dollar (USDJPY) fell to 104.22 Japanese yen from 104.73 yen.
Video: S&P drops out of worries about revenue, data, incentives and elections (Reuters)