Global stocks mixed amid varied Wall Street earnings results

January 24, 2024 | 16:10
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Global stock markets treaded water on Tuesday as investors eyed a raft of corporate earnings for clues as to whether growing optimism for the US economy this year is warranted.
Global stocks mixed amid varied Wall Street earnings results
Global stocks mixed amid varied Wall Street earnings results, illustration photo/ Source:

On Wall Street, the Dow Jones Industrial Average slipped 0.3 percent a day after rising to a record high, while the broad-based S&P 500 and the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite Index both rose.

"So far for the most part earnings have been good enough," Steve Sosnick from Interactive Brokers told AFP, adding that results included "the usual assortment of winners and losers."

He added it was "still early" in the season, and that more than 75 companies in the S&P 500 are due to report earnings this week, including some big tech firms.

Hong Kong led a rally in Asia on reports that Chinese officials are preparing new measures to bolster stocks and overall economy after months of sluggish growth.

Authorities are looking at a raft of initiatives, Bloomberg reported, adding that policymakers were seeking to mobilise nearly $280 billion, mainly from the offshore accounts of state-owned enterprises.

"The market was poor enough to warrant such elevated attention -- China cannot afford to see A-shares sinking toward the Lunar New Year holidays," said Neo Wang at Evercore ISI.

The positive sentiment initially carried over into European trading, but both Frankfurt and Paris ended the day in the red, while London finished flat.

"Unfortunately, the gains haven't lasted due to the narrow scope of the reported stimulus which appears to be geared more towards the stock market, rather than the economy itself," said market analyst Michael Hewson at CMC Markets UK.

"It feels more like a touch of profit-taking as traders look across to the US, wondering where now, following its record-setting start to this week, and the year," added David Morrison at Trade Nation.

Corporate results season is in full swing, with a slew of companies publishing quarterly and annual figures.

Among them this week have been consumer goods giant Procter & Gamble, which painted a mixed picture in its earnings report, and US conglomerate 3M, which saw its share price plunge more than 11 percent after reporting disappointing results.

In Europe, the Swedish telecoms equipment giant Ericsson warned that it expects further market declines outside China this year after booking a sizeable loss in 2023.

In a sign of fading inflation fears, oil prices slipped on expectations that supply will outstrip global demand this year, offsetting the Middle East worries sparked by the war in Gaza.

This week's release of fourth-quarter US GDP and consumer inflation data are also awaited as investors try to gauge when the Federal Reserve might begin to cut interest rates if inflation continues to trend down.

The ECB, which holds a policy meeting Thursday, is unlikely to cut rates but its president Christine Lagarde could provide more guidance after saying last week that easing could begin this summer.

- Key figures around 2015 GMT -

New York - Dow: DOWN 0.3 percent at 37,908.45 points (close)

New York - S&P 500: UP 0.3 percent at 4,864.60 (close)

New York - Nasdaq Composite: UP 0.4 percent at 15,425.94 (close)

London - FTSE 100: FLAT at 7,485.73 (close)

Paris - CAC 40: DOWN 0.3 percent at 7,388.04 (close)

Frankfurt - DAX: DOWN 0.3 percent at 16,627.09 (close)

EURO STOXX 50: DOWN 0.3 percent at 4,465.91 (close)

Tokyo - Nikkei 225: DOWN 0.1 percent at 36,517.57 (close)

Hong Kong - Hang Seng Index: UP 2.6 percent at 15,353.98 (close)

Shanghai - Composite: UP 0.5 percent at 2,770.98 (close)

Euro/dollar: DOWN at $1.0857 from $1.0885 on Monday

Dollar/yen: UP at 148.32 yen from 148.13 yen

Pound/dollar: DOWN at $1.2692 from $1.2708

Euro/pound: DOWN at 85.52 pence from 85.63 pence

West Texas Intermediate: DOWN 0.5 percent at $74.37 per barrel

Brent North Sea Crude: DOWN 0.6 percent at $79.55 per barrel


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