TOKYO – Stock markets traded narrow on Monday as investors awaited the central bank’s decision and earnings report next week. The US stock market will be closed for the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday.
In Europe, France’s CAC 40 fell 0.2% to 6,089, while Germany’s DAX rose 0.1% to 13,541. Britain’s FTSE 100 fell 0.3% to 7,654.
Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 rose 0.2% to close at 24,083.51, while Australia’s S&P / ASX 200 added 0.2% to 7,079.50. South Korea’s Kospi rose 0.5% to 2,262.64, while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng lost 0.9% to 28,800.63. The Shanghai Composite Index rose 0.7% to 3,095.79.
China’s central bank has kept its one-year loan prime rate unchanged at 4.15%, keeping credit more flexible as it uses other methods to pump liquidity into the market before the Lunar New Year.
The rate became the norm in China in August, based on quotes from major banks. The People’s Bank of China could indirectly influence this through its own interest rate decisions, and “seems to have taken a wait-and-see approach in response to the recent improvement in economic data,” said Julian Evans-Pritchard of Capital Economics. A comment
However, “with the potential for growth to come under renewed pressure, we expect the PBOC to resume its rate cuts much earlier,” he said.
Elsewhere, investors are looking to a statement from the Bank of Japan when its two-day policy meeting ends on Tuesday. The European Central Bank will decide interest rates over the weekend. Markets around the world are also watching for expected earnings reports from companies next week.
On Friday, Wall Street limited a milestone-setting week to more modest gains that pushed major stock indices to all-time highs.
The benchmark S&P 500 index also marked its second-straight weekly gain.
Technology stocks have driven much of the broader market gains with communications service providers and banks. Energy sector stocks were only falling. Bond prices have fallen, sending yields higher.
The latest batch of positive corporate earnings reports and economic data have helped keep investors in a buying mood since the mid-week signing of a preliminary trade agreement by the United States and China. Progress in trade has reduced fears that the conflict could escalate further on Wall Street.
Energy: Benchmark crude oil rose 3 2 cents to .8 58.86 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. International benchmark Brent crude rose 45 cents to $ 65.30 a barrel.
Currency: The dollar rose from 110.13 yen to 110.18 Japanese yen on Friday The euro fell from $ 1.1191 to $ 1.1084.
Yuri Kageyama, Associated Press