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Asian stocks swung between gains and losses, with the regional benchmark index trading near a five month high, as investors await the outcome of Greek bailout talks amid warnings Europe’s crisis threatens global demand.
Nikkei 225 8,917.52 -11.68 -0.13%
Hang Seng 20,699.19 -10.75 -0.05%
S&P/ASX 200 4,274.2 -21.79 -0.51%
Shanghai Composite 2,291.9 -39.23 -1.68%
In Tokyo, Japan Tobacco rose 5.7% after lifting its full-year net profit forecast, while Dainippon Screen Manufacturing dropped 6.5% after lowering its fiscal year net profit view.
A similar pattern was evident in Sydney with National Australia Bank shares sliding 3.9% on below-view first quarter earnings, while Transurban added 0.1% after reporting a strong first-half profit.
Car makers fell in Shanghai after SAIC Motor posted an 8.5% on-year decline in January vehicle sales. SAIC Motor fell 1.4% and Anhui Jianghuai Automobile slipped 3.4%.
European stocks declined for a second straight day as Greek talks on measures needed to get a second bailout continued and China said industrial-output growth is likely to slow.
Greek Prime Minister Lucas Papademos is convening the nation’s political leaders to seek consensus on the cuts required for another European Union-led bailout. Officials are working on the final draft of the document listing the budget and structural measures required to receive international funding, a government official said.
FTSE 100 5,890.26 -1.94 -0.03%, CAC 40 3,411.54 +6.27 +0.18%, DAX 6,754.2 -10.63 -0.16%
BMW, the world’s biggest maker of luxury cars, slid 2.7 percent to 68.82 euros, snapping a five-day advance, and Renault SA retreated 1.3 percent to 36.58 euros.
Rio Tinto, the world’s third-largest mining company, fell 2.3 percent to 3,854 pence and Eurasian Natural Resources Corp. dropped 3 percent to 700 pence.
Automakers and mining companies were the two worst performing group of 19 industries in the Stoxx 600 today.
Swatch declined 4.2 percent to 397.40 Swiss francs after reporting 2011 operating profit of 1.61 billion francs ($1.75 billion), missing the average projection in a survey of 1.67 billion francs.
U.S. stocks advanced, sending the Dow Jones Industrial Average to its highest level since May 2008, as Greece made progress on measures to secure international aid.
Greek Prime Minister Lucas Papademos postponed a meeting with heads of the political parties supporting his caretaker government a second time in as many days as the government and international creditors haggled over terms to secure a second aid package. Papademos will meet with the leaders in Athens tomorrow, instead of tonight as previously scheduled, a spokeswoman for his office said. In the U.S., consumer borrowing rose more than forecast in December.
Dow 12,878.20 +33.07 +0.26%, Nasdaq 2,904.08 +2.09 +0.07%, S&P 500 1,347.05 +2.72 +0.20%
McDonald’s added 1.4 percent, the most in the Dow, to $100.91. It may say tomorrow that sales at global stores open at least 13 months gained 5.8 percent in January, according to the average estimate of six analysts surveyed by Bloomberg News.
Yum gained 2.6 percent to $64.85. The company, with about 18,800 restaurants outside the U.S., said fourth-quarter sales at stores open at least 12 months grew 21 percent in China. Yum said it opened a record 656 stores last year in the Asian nation, where it gets more than 40 percent of its revenue.
Anadarko climbed 5.2 percent to $87.21. Output rose 12 percent to the equivalent of 683,000 barrels of oil a day during the last three months of 2011, The Woodlands, Texas-based company said. Sales volumes climbed to 63 million barrels at an average price of $104.82 a barrel of oil and condensate, more than the $98 estimate from Raymond James & Associates Inc.
Becton Dickinson & Co. slipped 3.8 percent to $77.51. The maker of medical devices and supplies cut its forecast for 2012 to no more than $5.70 a share, below an earlier projection of as much as $5.85 and the average analyst estimate of $5.80.
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