• Global shares mixed as investors await more earnings

    By: YURI KAGEYAMA, AP Business Writer

    Updated:
    TOKYO (AP) - Global markets were mixed Wednesday as investors await another batch of earnings reports from U.S. companies and Brexit talks faltered yet again.

    Germany's DAX rose 0.3% to 12,666, while Britain's FTSE 100 fell 0.1% to 7,202. France's CAC 40 was flat to slightly lower at 5,699.

    U.S. shares were poised to open down with Dow futures falling 0.2% at 26,929. S&P 500 futures were also down 0.2% at 2,992.

    European shares mostly declined after European Union and British negotiators failed to reach a breakthrough in Brexit talks during a frantic all-night session. They are to continue seeking a compromise on the eve of a crucial EU summit on Thursday.

    A report also showed that inflation in the 19-country eurozone was revised down in September to its lowest rate in nearly three years. Low inflation, which can be a sign of a weak economy, has been a concern for officials at the European Central Bank.

    In Asian trading, Japan's benchmark Nikkei 225 rose 1.2% to finish at 22,472.92, while Australia's S&P/ASX 200 gained 1.3% to 6,736.50. Hong Kong's Hang Seng edged up 0.6% to 26,664.28, while the Shanghai Composite index lost 0.4% to 2,978.71.

    South Korea's Kospi added 0.7% to 2,082.83 after the Bank of Korea announced it was cutting its benchmark interest rate by a quarter of a percentage point, to a record-low 1.25%.

    Shares also rose in Taiwan and most of Southeast Asia. India's Sensex fell 0.1%.

    U.S. stocks notched solid gains Tuesday on Wall Street on surprisingly good quarterly results from some of the nation's biggest companies.

    Investors are looking to the wave of quarterly report cards due out over the next few weeks to give them a clearer picture of what impact the trade war between the U.S. and China is having on corporate profits and the broader economy.

    "Global market sentiment was seen picking up a notch overnight with Wall Street gaining on earnings despite the uncertainty that persists on U.S.-China trade," said Jingyi Pan, market strategist with IG in Singapore.

    The encouraging earnings reports came with a spate of surprisingly good forecasts for the rest of the year, which helped ease concerns about a slowdown due to the costly trade conflict.

    On Friday, the U.S. agreed to suspend a planned hike in tariffs on $250 billion of Chinese goods that had been set to kick in Tuesday. Beijing, meanwhile, agreed to buy $40 billion to $50 billion in U.S. farm products.

    The U.S. did not, however, cancel plans for more tariffs in December and the sticking points of intellectual property and trade secrets still hang over the dispute.

    ENERGY: Benchmark crude oil picked up 22 cents to $53.06 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. It fell 78 cents to $52.81 a barrel Tuesday. Brent crude oil, the international standard, gained 9 cents to $58.83 a barrel.

    CURRENCIES: The dollar fell to 108.77 Japanese yen from 108.85 yen on Tuesday. The euro strengthened to $1.1032 from $1.1029.

    ___

    Matt Ott in Washington contributed to this report.

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