Stocks: Weekly’s review
Asian stocks rose, sending a regional benchmark index toward its biggest two-day gain in two years, as optimism European officials will protect banks from the region’s debt crisis boosted the earnings outlook for lenders and exporters.
The European Commission is pushing for a coordinated capital injection for banks to shield them from the fallout of a potential Greek default. Banks in Europe rallied after European Central Bank President Jean-Claude Trichet said the ECB will resume purchases of mortgage-backed securities and reintroduce yearlong loans for banks. In London, the Bank of England boosted its asset-purchase program by more than a third to 275 billion pounds ($425 billion).
Japan’s Nikkei 225 Stock Average gained 1 percent, extending a 1.7 percent advance yesterday. South Korea’s Kospi Index added 2.9 percent and Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 rose 2.3 percent, to cap its biggest weekly gain in a year. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index advanced 3.1 percent.
National Australia Bank Ltd., the nation’s largest lender to businesses, gained 3.9 percent in Sydney. Hutchison Whampoa Ltd., which owns ports in Germany and Spain, surged 10.5 percent in Hong Kong after saying its operations in Europe are “very resilient.” Li & Fung Ltd., the world’s biggest supplier of clothes and toys to retailers, surged 7.6 percent. BHP Billiton Ltd., No. 1 mining company, jumped 2.5 percent in Sydney after commodity prices increased.
Among stocks that declined today, Sony Corp. dropped 3.7 percent to 1,415 yen in Tokyo. The consumer electronics manufacturer is getting closer to an agreement to buy Ericsson AB’s stake in their mobile-phone venture, the Wall Street Journal reported, citing people familiar with the matter. Nomura Holdings Inc. separately cut Sony’s rating to “neutral” from “buy.”
European stocks gained for a third day, posting a second weekly gain, as a report showed the U.S. economy added more jobs than economists had estimated.
National benchmark indexes climbed in 12 of the 18 western- European markets. Germany’s DAX Index climbed 0.5 percent and the U.K.’s FTSE 100 Index gained 0.2 percent. France’s CAC 40 Index increased 0.7 percent.
FTSE 100 5,303 +12.14 +0.23%, CAC 40 3,096 +20.19 +0.66%, DAX 5,676 +30.45 +0.54%
BMW and Daimler, the world’s biggest makers of luxury cars, jumped 4.1 percent to 50.89 euros and 1.3 percent to 33.98 euros, respectively. Rio Tinto, the world’s second-largest mining company, rose 1.2 percent to 3,164 pence, while Xstrata Plc climbed 2.7 percent to 910 pence. Copper, lead, tin and zinc all rose on the London Metal Exchange. Continental AG surged 4.9 percent to 46.91 euros as the world’s fourth-largest tiremaker plans to spend more than $500 million to build a new tire factory at Sumter, South Carolina, to meet increasing demand.
U.S. stocks retreated, trimming a weekly advance for the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index, as concern Europe’s debt crisis will worsen overshadowed faster-than forecast growth in American employment.
Dow 11,103.12 -20.21 -0.18%, Nasdaq 2,479.35 -27.47 -1.10%, S&P 500 1,155.46 9.51 -0.82%
The S&P 500 fell 0.8 percent, trimming its weekly gain to 2.1 percent. The index rose 6 percent over the previous three days. Financial stocks had the biggest decline in the S&P 500 among 10 industries, falling 3.7 percent, after Fitch Ratings downgraded the debt ratings of Italy and Spain.
Sprint Nextel Corp. tumbled 20 percent as the third- largest U.S. wireless carrier said it needs to raise additional capital as it spends on a network upgrade and new handsets.
Bank of America Corp. fell 6.1 percent, the most in the Dow, to $5.90. Goldman Sachs Group Inc. decreased 5.4 percent to $92.69. JPMorgan Chase & Co. lost 5.2 percent to $30.70.
Companies that are less reliant on an expanding economy outperformed the S&P 500. Wal-Mart Stores Inc. climbed 1.8 percent to $53.70. Pfizer Inc. added 1.2 percent to $18.44.