Headline indices of the Mainland China equity market were mixed after swerving in and out of the red on Wednesday, 21 November 2018, as risk sentiments subdued on following negative cues from U.S. markets overnight and other Asian bourses amid rising growth concerns, plummeting crude oil prices, and trade concerns. In late afternoon trade, the benchmark Shanghai Composite Index fell 0.13%, or 3.40 points, to 2,642.46, meanwhile the Shenzhen Composite Index, which tracks stocks on China's second exchange, rose 0.1%, or 1.32 points, to 1,380.24. The blue-chip CSI300 index climbed up 0.1%, or 2.79 points, to 3,221.20.

The lead from Wall Street is brutal as stocks showed another significant move to the downside on Tuesday, sending the tech-heavy NASDAQ to its lowest closing level in over seven months. The continued weakness on Wall Street reflected disappointing earnings news from companies such as Target (TGT), Kohl's (KSS) and Victoria's Secret parent L Brands (LB). A continued decline by Apple (AAPL) also weighed on the markets. The Dow plunged 551.80 points or 2.21 percent to 24,465.64, while the NASDAQ shed 119.65 points or 1.70 percent to 6,908.82 and the S&P 500 fell 48.84 points or 1.82 percent to 2,641.89.

Crude oil prices on Wednesday clawed back some of the previous day's more than 6 percent fall, supported by a report of an unexpected drop in U.S. commercial crude inventories as well as record Indian crude imports. But investors remained on edge, with the International Energy Agency (IEA) warning of unprecedented uncertainty in oil markets due to a difficult economic environment and political risk. International Brent crude oil futures were at $63.42 per barrel at 0157 GMT, up 89 cents, or 1.4 percent from their last close. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures, were up 70 cents, or 1.3 percent, at $54.13 a barrel. Wednesday's gains came after a report by the American Petroleum Institute on Tuesday that U.S. commercial crude oil inventories had fallen unexpectedly by 1.5 million barrels, to 439.2 million barrels, in the week to Nov. 16. Yet Wednesday's bounce was small in the context of general market weakness, which saw crude tumble by more than 6 percent at $53.43 a barrel, the lowest settlement price in 13 months, the previous session amid a selloff in global stock markets.

Although, an upcoming meeting between Chinese President Xi Jinping and his US counterpart Donald Trump later this month at the G-20 summit in Buenos Aires, Argentina triggers hopes for a trade deal between the two countries, many investors remain sceptical.

Chinese investors dumped stocks in acquisitive sectors such as entertainment, media and computer, on concerns new regulatory demands and a slowing economy could force heavy write-downs for firms that overpaid for assets during the boom years.

NEWS FROM THE PRESS: The net profit of China's 131 major securities brokers totalled 49.66 billion yuan (US$7.15 billion), according to data from the Securities Association of China. A total of 105 companies made profits in the third quarter of this year. The overall performance of securities brokers retreated in the third quarter of this year. In the third quarter of 2016, the net profit of China's 127 major securities brokers totalled 95.82 billion yuan. A total 116 companies made profits in the third quarter of 2016, data from the association showed. The association did not release data for the third quarter of 2017.

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