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Asian stocks fell, with the regional benchmark index extending a four-week loss, on concern China’s biggest banks may fall short of loan targets for the first time in at least seven years amid an economic slowdown.
China Minsheng Banking Corp. fell 3 percent, leading banks lower in Hong Kong.
Nikkei 225 8,580.39 +17.01 +0.20%
S&P/ASX 200 -26.65 -0.66%
Shanghai Composite 2,333.55 -17.42 -0.74%
Esprit Holdings Ltd., a clothier that depends on Europe for 79 percent of its sales, lost 3.1 percent in Hong Kong. Sims Metal Management Ltd. slid 6.1 percent in Sydney as the processor of scrap metal forecast full-year earnings will decline.
European stocks climbed, extending the Stoxx Europe 600 Index’s first weekly advance in May, as Italy’s Prime Minister Mario Monti said that most European Union leaders support joint bonds for the euro area.
Spain’s central government will analyze “with all caution” requests from regional governments to help them regain access to capital markets, Deputy Prime Minister Soraya Saenz de Santamaria said today after a cabinet meeting.
Catalonia will comply with its budget program and will honor its commitments, the regional government said today.
Monti told Italian television station La7 yesterday that the majority of EU leaders at a Brussels meeting this week backed joint euro-area bonds. He added that Italy can help persuade Germany to support Europe’s “common good” as well.
National benchmark indexes climbed in 13 of the 18 western- European markets. The U.K.’s FTSE 100 added less than 0.1 percent. Germany’s DAX increased 0.4 percent and France’s CAC 40 climbed 0.3 percent. Greece’s ASE sank 3.5 percent.
Lonmin and Fresnillo retreated 1.6 percent to 729 pence and 2.2 percent to 1,317 pence, respectively. Vedanta Resources Plc declined 3.3 percent to 966.5 pence. A gauge of mining companies posted the biggest decline on the Stoxx 600.
Mobistar, Belgium’s second-biggest mobile-phone company, slid 3.4 percent to 25.45 euros and Telecom Italia SpA lost 2 percent to 69.5 euro cents.
U.S. stocks fell, trimming the first weekly gain in the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index since April, as concern about Spain’s finances tempered optimism with data showing American consumer confidence rose to a four-year high.
Spain is analyzing requests from regional governments to help them regain access to capital markets, Deputy Prime Minister Soraya Saenz de Santamaria said today. Catalonia’s government said it is complying “strictly” with its budget program and will honor its commitments. The Bankia group, a Spanish lender nationalized earlier this month, will seek 19 billion euros ($23.8 billion) of government funds. In the U.S., the Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan final index of consumer sentiment climbed to 79.3 in May, beating estimates.
Eight out of 10 groups in the S&P 500 fell today. Boeing (ВА), the largest aerospace company, retreated 2 percent to $70. JPMorgan (JPM) declined 1.4 percent to $33.50.
Talbots Inc. tumbled 41 percent, the most ever, to $1.51. The company ended exclusive talks to be bought by Sycamore Partners for $215 million and saying it will explore other strategic alternatives.
Chesapeake Energy Corp. rallied 1.5 percent to $15.81. Billionaire investor Carl Icahn, known for pushing for change at the companies in which he invests, reported that he has a 7.56 percent stake in the company. The news came after the close of regular trading.
RealD Inc. surged 2.9 percent to $11.47. The maker of three-dimensional projection gear advanced after Sony Pictures agreed to pay for 3-D glasses for showings of “Men in Black 3,” the movie opening in U.S. theaters today.
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