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22.06.2012 07:24

Stocks: Thursday’s review

Asian stocks outside Japan fell, with the regional benchmark index retreating from a one-month high, as a survey showed China’s manufacturing may shrink for an eighth month and after the Federal Reserve cut its U.S. growth estimate and expanded its Operation Twist program.

Nikkei 225 8,824.07 +71.76 +0.82%

S&P/ASX 200 4,087.6 -44.84 -1.09%

Shanghai Composite 2,264.7 -28.18 -1.23%

Samsung Electronics Co., the world’s No. 1 mobile-phone maker by sales that counts China and the U.S. as its biggest markets, dropped 2 percent in Seoul.

BHP Billiton Ltd., the world’s largest mining company and Australia’s No. 1 oil producer, declined 1.2 percent in Sydney as crude and copper futures fell.

Renesas Electronics Corp. gained 3.1 percent in Tokyo on a report that KKR & Co. and Silver Lake are in talks to invest in the chipmaker.

European stocks fell from their highest level in five weeks as the Federal Reserve cut its growth forecast for the U.S. economy and a survey indicated China’s manufacturing industry may shrink for an eighth month.

The policy-setting Federal Open Market Committee yesterday extended its Operation Twist program, which aims to reduce borrowing costs. The Fed will swap $267 billion of short-term securities with longer-term debt through the end of 2012.

Euro-area services and manufacturing output contracted for a fifth month in June, suggesting the economy may fail to grow in the current quarter. A composite index based on a survey of purchasing managers in both industries in the 17-nation euro area held at 46, the same reading as in May, London-based Markit Economics said today. Spain sold more debt than planned just three days after the country’s 10-year bond yields hit a euro-era record. The nation sold 2.2 billion euros ($2.8 billion) of two-, three- and five- year securities today, compared with a maximum target of 2 billion euros set for the auction.

National benchmark indexes dropped in 16 of the 18 western- European markets. France’s CAC 40 decreased 0.4 percent. Germany’s DAX sank 0.8 percent, while the U.K.’s FTSE 100 slid 1 percent.

A gauge of European mining companies dropped for the first time in a week as a global commodity benchmark declined to its lowest level since 2010. BHP Billiton, the world’s biggest mining company, fell 3 percent to 1,819 pence. Anglo American lost 5.2 percent to 2,101 pence.

Invensys slumped 14 percent to 220 pence, its biggest decline since Jan. 13, after the British software and meters maker said it’s no longer in talks with Emerson Electric Co. or other potential suitors.

Air France-KLM Group rallied 5.5 percent to 3.63 euros, its highest price in more than a month, after announcing a plan to eliminate more than 5,000 jobs, equivalent to 10 percent of posts at the Air France unit.

U.S. stocks tumbled, while commodities entered a bear market, after signals of a global slowdown in manufacturing added to disappointing housing and labor market data at the world’s largest economy.

Stocks from Hong Kong to London and Sao Paulo slumped on concern about a global slowdown. Data showed euro-area manufacturing shrank at the fastest pace in three years and a Chinese output gauge indicated contraction. More Americans than forecast filed claims for jobless benefits, manufacturing in the Philadelphia region shrank and sales of existing homes fell.

Stocks also slumped as Moody’s Investors Service told banks it would announce credit downgrades for as many as 17 lenders and securities firms, according to two people with knowledge of the plans.

Alcoa (АА), the largest U.S. aluminum producer, dropped 4.2 percent to $8.55. Chevron (CVX) decreased 3.5 percent to $100.02.

Bank of America Corp. (BAC) dropped 3.9 percent to $7.82. JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM) slid 2.6 percent to $35.51.

Bed Bath & Beyond declined 17 percent, the most ever, to $61.17. It said comparable-store sales in the first quarter rose 3 percent compared with 7 percent a year earlier. Analysts projected a gain of 3.8 percent, the average of five estimates compiled by Bloomberg.

Micron Technology Inc. retreated 7.8 percent to $5.65. The largest U.S. maker of computer memory reported a fourth consecutive quarterly loss after prices fell for chips used to store data in phones and tablets, crimping sales.

Onyx Pharmaceuticals Inc. surged 43 percent to $63.78, the highest level on record. The company won support from a U.S. advisory panel for its drug to treat a deadly blood cancer that affects 50,000 Americans.

22.06.2012 07:00

Tech for USD / JPY

Market Focus

  • The Bank of Japan decided by a 7-2 majority vote to hold the interest rate at -0.10%
  • Earnings Season in U.S.: Major Reports of the Week
  • U.S. commercial crude oil inventories decreased by 4.7 million barrels from the previous week
  • Australian unemployment rate stable at 5.6% in June
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