Global stocks mostly higher in quiet holiday trading
Global stock indexes were mostly higher Wednesday in quiet holiday trading after oil prices erased some recent gains. Investors generally shrugged off a dip in technology stocks on Wall Street.
KEEPING SCORE: France’s CAC 40 rose 0.1 percent to 5,369 points, while Germany’s DAX gained nearly 0.1 percent to 13,083. Britain’s FTSE 100 was up 0.2 percent at 7,607. U.S. shares were also set to climb slightly, with Dow and S&P 500 futures both gaining almost 0.1 percent.
ASIA’S DAY: Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 edged up nearly 0.1 percent to finish at 22,911.21, while Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 was virtually unchanged at 6,069.90. South Korea’s Kospi added 0.4 percent to 2,436.67. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng inched 0.1 percent higher to 29,597.66. The Shanghai Composite index lost 0.9 percent to 3,275.78.
APPLE FACTOR: Apple slid 2.5 percent on Wall Street overnight amid speculation the consumer electronics giant might cut its targets for sales of its latest iPhone. A Taiwanese newspaper reported iPhone X sales targets may get cut amid weak sales, but that already had been largely figured in for Asian trading.
ENERGY: Benchmark U.S. crude dropped 40 cents to $59.57 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. It gained $1.50 to $59.97 overnight. Brent crude, which is used to price international oils, slipped 75 cents to $66.27 per barrel.
CURRENCIES: The dollar fell slightly to 113.22 yen from 113.30 yen late Tuesday. The euro strengthened to $1.1891 from $1.1859.
BITCOIN VOLATILITY: The price of the virtual currency bitcoin stabilized somewhat after a few days of heightened volatility. It was down 0.3 percent on the day, at around $15,700. Last week it tumbled from $17,000 to about $12,000 in a single day, before picking up and trading around the $15,000 mark.
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