OPENING CALL: The Australian share market is expected to open lower. The SPI200 futures contract expected to open down 2 points.
Boeing pushed back its timetable for regulators to approve the return of the troubled 737 MAX for commercial service, saying it doesn’t expect approval until at least the middle of the year.
German authorities raided several facilities connected to the German subsidiary of Mitsubishi as part of a probe into allegations that the Japanese auto maker installed illegal emissions-management software on some diesel-powered vehicles sold in Germany.
Each Market in Focus
Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 closed 0.2% lower at 7066.3, pausing after a run of five straight record closes.
Nearly every sector on the index lost ground. Tech, utilities and energy led falls, with consumer staples, health and materials defying that trend.
Wisetech Global fell 4.0% and Viva Energy dropped 2.7%. Many tourism-related stocks stalled amid fears over China’s coronavirus outbreak, with Sydney Airport giving up 3.0% and Qantas dropping 1.7%. Woolworths gained 2.0% after Macquarie upgraded the supermarket chain to outperform from neutral.
U.S. stocks declined intraday after the first reported case in the U.S. of a dangerous pneumonialike virus that originated in central China.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 0.6%, poised for its first decline in six sessions. The S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite fell 0.3%. All three indexes have hit a series of repeated highs in the weeks since the U.S. and China indicated progress on a trade
The Dow was weighed down by a 5.5% drop in shares of Boeing. The aerospace giant said it expects its 737 MAX jet will be grounded through mid-2020, following last year’s fatal crashes. The stock, which was halted for news, remains the second most expensive stock in
the price-weighted index, which means moves in its share price can have a disproportionately large effect on the Dow’s overall change.
Crude-oil prices finished lower as investor worries about rising global supplies and a potential slowdown in global economic growth overshadowed a supply disruption in the Middle East due to unrest in Libya and Iraq.
West Texas Intermediate crude futures saw its most-active March contract decline by 20 cents, or 0.3%, to settle at $58.38 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The February contract, which expired at the end of the regular trading session, lost 20
cents, or 0.3%, to finish at $58.34 a barrel.
In the forex market, apart from the Chinese yuan, other Asian currencies also fell against the U.S. dollar on fears that tourism and Asian economies could be hurt if there is a widespread outbreak of the virus.
The South Korean won slid 0.7% against the U.S. dollar, and the Taiwan dollar lost 0.2% against the greenback. The WSJ Dollar Index was recently up 0.03% to 90.48.
Asian stocks dropped amid concerns about the rapid spread of a potentially deadly pneumonialike virus originating in central China.
Japanese stocks ended lower, with the benchmark Nikkei Stock Average closing down 0.9% at 23864.56, dragged by falls in cosmetics, chemical and electronics stocks. The market is focusing on the earnings season starting later this week after the Bank of Japan
delivered no surprises earlier in the day.
South Korean stocks fell, led by declines in aviation and tour companies amid growing concerns about the spread of the coronavirus from China to other countries. The benchmark Kospi finished down 1.0% at 2239.69, snapping its three-session winning streak.
Hong Kong stocks took a hit as investors digested news that the coronavirus outbreak in China is spreading and that Moody’s downgraded the city’s rating one notch. The Hang Seng Index closed down 2.8% at 27985.33, reversing gains made since the start of the year due
to easing trade tensions. The HSI is off 0.7% for 2020 to date.
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