Monday, June 24, 2024
26 C
Brunei Town

Asian stock markets mixed after Wall St sinks further

Joe McDonald

BEIJING (AP) – Asian stock markets were mixed yesterday after Wall Street sank on weak United States (US) housing sales and a profit warning by a prominent social media brand.

Shanghai and Seoul advanced while Tokyo and Hong Kong declined. Oil prices rose more than USD1 per barrel to stay above USD110.

Wall Street’s benchmark S&P 500 index lost 0.8 per cent after the profit warning on Tuesday by Snapchat’s parent company spooked investors into dumping social media stocks.

Construction stocks fell after US home sales plunged in April.

“The overall mood in equity markets remains largely downbeat,” said Jun Rong Yeap of IG in a report.

The Shanghai Composite Index advanced 0.1 per cent to 3,074.51 while the Nikkei 225 in Tokyo shed 0.1 per cent to 26,713.08. The Hang Seng in Hong Kong lost less than 0.1 per cent to 20,093.33.

The Kospi in Seoul rose 0.7 per cent to 2,623.41 and Sydney’s S&P-ASX 200 gained 0.6 per cent to 7,173.30. New Zealand and Jakarta declined while Singapore advanced.

Currency traders work at a foreign exchange dealing room in Seoul, South Korea. PHOTO: AP

Investors are on edge about the impact of interest rate hikes in the US and other Western economies to cool surging inflation, as well as Russia’s war on Ukraine and a Chinese economic slowdown.

Yesterday, the Federal Reserve is due to give insight into its decision-making by releasing minutes of its latest policy meeting.

On Wall Street, the S&P 500 fell to 3,941.48. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 0.2 per cent to 31,928.62.

The S&P is down 18 per cent from its January 3 high, putting it on the brink of a bear market, or a 20 per cent decline from the previous top.

The Nasdaq composite, dominated by tech stocks, slide 2.3 per cent to 11,264.45 after the social media selloff. Snap plummeted 43.1 per cent, its biggest single-day drop ever.

Facebook parent Meta slumped 7.6 per cent. Google’s parent fell 5.1 per cent.

Retailers and companies that rely on direct consumer spending declined. Amazon slid 3.2 per cent and Target fell 2.6 per cent.

The pullback undercut the previous day’s broad rally.

Homebuilders slumped following a government report showing that April sales of newly built homes plunged 26.9 per cent from a year earlier. KB Home fell 2.7 per cent. Cruise lines and other travel-related companies took heavy losses. Carnival slid 10.3 per cent and Norwegian Cruise Line fell 12 per cent.

In energy markets, benchmark US crude rose USD1.28 to USD111.05 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract fell 52 cents on Tuesday to USD109.77. Brent crude, the price basis for international oil trading, advanced USD1.19 to USD111.88 per barrel in London. It rose 14 cents the previous session to USD113.56.

The dollar gained to JPY127.05 from Tuesday’s JPY126.82. The euro rose to USD1.0725 from USD1.0693.