Nikkei 225 declines on delta variant concerns
Tokyo’s benchmark stock index fell for a third straight day on Friday. The Nikkei Average briefly lost almost 700 points on concern about the impact of the fast-spreading Delta variant coronavirus on the global economy. Investors were also worried that a fourth pandemic state of emergency for the Japanese capital from next week will slow the country’s recovery. The Nikkei 225 finished the day at 27,940, down 0.6 percent from Thursday’s close. Analysts say investors were also worried that the decision to hold Olympic events in the metropolitan area without spectators would depress consumer spending.
Sensex drops nearly 500 points
The Indian equity benchmarks fell sharply on Thursday on the back of weak global cues. The Sensex fell as much as 626 point and Nifty 50 index briefly tumbled below its important psychological level of 15,700. Global stocks fell tracking a slump in Asia amid a widening crackdown on the tech sector in China and concern over the strength of the country’s economic recovery, while oil prices also sagged on supply uncertainty. ICICI Bank, HDFC Bank, Reliance Industries, Kotak Mahindra Bank, Hindustan Unilever and State Bank of India were among the top drags on the Sensex. The Sensex declined points 486 or 0.92 percent to close at 52,569 and Nifty 50 index dropped 152 points to end at 15,728.
Canada Stocks-TSX eyes worst day in 4-month
Canada’s main stock index fell on Thursday, set for its biggest drop in over four months, weighed by a 2.4 percent drop in energy stocks as crude prices extended losses on supply uncertainty. The energy sector dropped 2.4 percent as crude prices fell on fears the current output agreement could be abandoned after the collapse in talks among OPEC+ members. Meanwhile, the financials sector and material stocks slipped 1.5 percent and 0.9 percent, respectively, adding to the downbeat mood. At 9:38 a.m. ET, the Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index was down 235.16 points, or 1.16 percent, at 20,055.44. Uranium company Nexgen Energy Ltd fell 4.8 percent, the most on the TSX. The second biggest decliner was fashion retailer Aritzia Inc, down 4.7 percent. On the TSX, 16 issues were higher, while 210 issues declined for a 13.13-to-1 ratio to the downside, with 15.56 million shares traded.
Worst day in nearly 3-week for FTSE 100
London’s FTSE 100 posted its biggest drop in three weeks on Thursday, weighed down by heavyweight financials and miners, while betting firm Entain rose on strong earnings and corporate updates. The FTSE 100 ended down 1.7 percent, dragged by a 2.1 percent fall in major banks as they tracked weaker bond yields. Precious metal miners and homebuilders fell 1.1 percent and 3.3 percent, respectively. Entain, the owner of the Ladbrokes and Coral brands climbed 0.7 percent and was the second biggest gainer on the index after it reported an 11 percent rise in first-half net gaming revenue and said it was doubling investment in its game development studios. The FTSE 100 has risen 8.8 percent so far this year, primarily led by gains in banks, materials and energy stocks. However, it has largely underperformed its developed market peers over risks arising from a rise in local coronavirus infections. Homebuilder Persimmon Plc slipped 4.8 percent and was the third biggest decliner on the index, even after it reported higher half-year revenue and said it expected housing demand to remain robust. Boosting hopes for airlines, transport secretary Grant Shapps said fully-vaccinated Britons returning from medium-risk amber list countries will no longer have to quarantine when they arrive home from July 19. British Airways owner IAG gained 0.3 percent.
Taiwan stocks open down
The Taiwan Stock Exchange’s main index opened down 87.97 points at 17,778.12 Friday on turnover of NT$8.44 billion (US$300.93 million). Shares in Taiwan closed slightly higher Thursday as large cap tech stocks trended lower, offsetting the gains on the broader market in the wake of the downturn suffered by semiconductor stocks on U.S. markets overnight, dealers said. Rotational buying continued to focus on old economy stocks, in particular in the shipping and steel industries as optimism over strong global demand prompted retail investors to jump onto the trading floor, they said. The Taiex, the weighted index on the Taiwan Stock Exchange (TWSE), ended up 15.40 points, or 0.09 percent, at 17,866.09, after moving between 17,742.08 and 17,935.11. Turnover totaled NT$637.84 billion (US$22.78 billion). The market opened up 0.17 percent and soon rose to the day’s high, but after the Taiex breached 17,900 points, selling in the electronics sector emerged, while old economy stocks in the shipping and steel industries came off their earlier low, helping the broader market end above the previous closing, dealers said.