Stocks: Tuesday's review
Japanese stocks fell for a second day, driving down the Topix index by the most in five weeks, amid concern Europe’s debt crisis will spread, weakening earnings prospects for banks and exporters.Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc. (8306), Japan’s largest lender by market value, sank 2.9 percent. Sony Corp. (6758), which sells about 20 percent of its PlayStation game consoles and other products in Europe, retreated 3 percent. Toyota Motor Corp. (7203), the world’s largest carmaker, lost 1.9 percent.The Nikkei 225 Stock Average fell 1.4 percent to 9,925.92 in Tokyo. The broader Topix index declined 1.5 percent to 857.19, its biggest drop since June 2, as bond yields in Italy and Spain spiked toward levels that forced Greece Ireland and Portugal to request external help.
Italy and Spain are being dragged into the crisis on concern soaring bond yields triggered by a failure to resolve rescues of Greece, Ireland and Portugal may make it impossible for them to finance their borrowings. The yield on Italy’s 10- year bond surged to its highest in more than a decade, pushing the premium investors demand to hold the debt over German bunds to a Euro-era record.European stocks fell, dragging the Stoxx Europe 600 Index to the biggest three-day drop since March, amid growing concern that the region’s government-debt crisis is spreading.Thomas Cook Group Plc (TCG) slumped 28 percent after Europe’s second-largest tour operator cut its forecast. Infineon Technologies AG (IFX) led semiconductor shares lower as U.S. rivals Microchip Technology Inc. and Novellus Systems Inc. reported results that missed estimates. Italy’s benchmark FTSE MIB Index erased an earlier 4.8 percent drop as UniCredit SpA (UCG) rebounded.Alcoa Inc. (AA) became the first company in the Dow Jones Industrial Average to report second-quarter earnings after the close of New York trading yesterday. The largest U.S. aluminum producer posted per-share profit that trailed estimates.U.S. stocks gained, rebounding from the worst two-day drop for the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index since March, as minutes from the Federal Reserve’s last meeting showed policy makers had not ruled out further stimulus efforts and European leaders worked to resolve the region’s debt crisis.
Utilities and financial stocks led gains in the S&P 500, climbing 1.1 percent as a group. Cisco Systems Inc. (CSCO) jumped 2.5 percent after reports it would announce job cuts. Semiconductor- related shares slumped, with Intel Corp. falling 1.2 percent after Novellus Systems Inc. (NVLS) forecast lower-than-estimated third- quarter earnings. Alcoa Inc. (AA) slipped 0.1 percent after second- quarter profit more than doubled on higher prices for aluminum.