Asian stocks mixed on fading U.S. stimulus hopes, virus concerns
By Suzanne Barlyn NEW YORK (Reuters) - Asian markets were off to a mixed start on Thursday as hopes of U.S. fiscal stimulus before the presidential election faded and a record number of new coronavirus infections in parts of Europe propelled investors toward safe-havens such as gold
By Suzanne Barlyn
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Asian markets were off to a mixed start on Thursday as hopes of U.S. fiscal stimulus before the presidential election faded and a record number of new coronavirus infections in parts of Europe propelled investors toward safe-havens such as gold.
Downbeat comments from U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin that a stimulus deal was unlikely be made before the Nov. 3 vote weighed on fragile investor sentiment.
With COVID-19 cases surging, some European nations are closing schools as authorities braced for a repeat of the nightmare scenario seen earlier this year.
In a mixed Asian open, Australian equities bucked Wall Street declines, opening slightly higher because of "good support" for material and mining stocks, said Michael McCarthy, CMC Markets chief market strategist.
MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan <.MIAPJ0000PUS> slipped 0.1%.
Australia's S&P/ASX 200 <.AXJO> rose 0.6%, while Japan's Nikkei 225 <.N225> fell 0.3%. Hong Kong's Hang Seng index futures <.HSI> <.HSIc1> were down 0.49%.
E-mini futures for the S&P 500
On Wall Street, the Dow Jones Industrial Average <.DJI> fell 0.58%, the S&P 500 <.SPX> lost 0.66% and the Nasdaq Composite <.IXIC> dropped 0.8%.
Bank of America
Gold gained 1% on Wednesday, rebounding from a sharp decline in the previous session, boosted by a weaker U.S. dollar and economic uncertainties.
The Australian dollar
E-mini futures for the S&P 500
Australia is set to release September unemployment data on Thursday.
Tensions between Beijing and Washington remain in view as the U.S. State Department has submitted a proposal for the Trump administration to add China's Ant Group
Investors are also tracking Brexit talks, as the deadline for a pact on the European Union's relations with Britain nears. EU leaders meeting on Thursday and Friday will tell their Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier to step up talks to get a deal by Jan. 1, 2021.
The U.S. dollar index <=USD>, which measures the greenback against a basket of six major currencies, fell 0.15%, after pulling its best day in three weeks on Tuesday, with the euro
In a sign that some investors preferred traditionally safer assets for now, the yen
A weaker dollar, which makes oil cheaper for holders of other currencies, supported oil prices.
(Reporting by Suzanne Barlyn; Editing by Sam Holmes)
This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.
By Robin Emmott and John Irish | BRUSSELS/PARIS BRUSSELS/PARIS France and Germany will agree to a U.S. plan for NATO to take a bigger role in the fight against Islamic militants at a meeting with President Donald Trump on Thursday, but insist the move is purely symbolic, four senior European diplomats said.The decision to allow the North Atlantic Treaty Organization to join the coalition against Islamic State in Syria and Iraq follows weeks of pressure on the two allies, who are wary of NATO confronting Russia in Syria and of alienating Arab countries who see NATO as pushing a pro-Western agenda."NATO as an institution will join the coalition," said one senior diplomat involved in the discussions. "The question is whether this just a symbolic gesture to the United States
BEIJING Chinese President Xi Jinping on Wednesday called for greater efforts to make the country's navy a world class one, strong in operations on, below and above the surface, as it steps up its ability to project power far from its shores.China's navy has taken an increasingly prominent role in recent months, with a rising star admiral taking command, its first aircraft carrier sailing around self-ruled Taiwan and a new aircraft carrier launched last month.With President Donald Trump promising a US shipbuilding spree and unnerving Beijing with his unpredictable approach on hot button issues including Taiwan and the South and East China Seas, China is pushing to narrow the gap with the U.S. Navy.Inspecting navy headquarters, Xi said the navy should "aim for the top ranks in the world", the Defence Ministry said in a statement about his visit."Building a strong and modern navy is an important mark of a top ranking global military," the ministry paraphrased Xi as saying.