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Asian stocks follow Wall Street lower after mixed earnings

SeattlePI.com Wednesday, 23 October 2019
BEIJING (AP) — Asian stock markets followed Wall Street lower Wednesday after major companies reported mixed earnings and an EU leader said he would recommend the trade bloc let Britain to delay its departure.

Benchmarks in Shanghai, Hong Kong and Seoul declined, while Tokyo gained 0.4%.

U.S. shares retreated, led by a tech sell-off, as investors weighed mixed earnings from McDonald's, Procter & Gamble and other big companies. That blunted investor optimism that had been fed by hopes for progress in settling a damaging U.S.-Chinese tariff war.

The president of the European Council, Donald Tusk, said he would recommend the other 27 nations in the trade bloc grant Britain's request for an extension to its Oct. 31 deadline to withdraw.

Britain wants a three-month delay until the end of January 2020. Parliament passed a law forcing Prime Minister Boris Johnson to seek the postponement.

"Alongside Brexit, the relatively mixed set of earnings out of the US overnight provides poor leads for Asia markets," said Jingyi Pan of IG in a report.

More results from Boeing, Caterpillar and other industrial names due Wednesday "could cap the gains for the S&P 500 index," said Pan.

The Shanghai Composite Index lost 0.1% to 2,950.42 and Hong Kong's Hang Seng retreated 0.8% to 26,565.05. Tokyo's Nikkei 225 rose 0.4% to 22,636.89.

Seoul's Kospi declined 0.5% to 2,079.34 and Sydney's S&P-ASX 200 was flat at 6,673.10. India's Sensex added 0.5% to 39,148.72, while benchmarks in Taiwan, New Zealand and Singapore retreated.

On Wall Street, the benchmark S&P 500 index fell 0.4% to 2,995.99. The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 0.2% to 26,788.10.

The Nasdaq, which is heavily weighted with technology stocks, bore the brunt of the selling, losing 0.7% to 8,104.30.

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